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Pastor Maldonado to lose F1 seat

By Scott Newman, 29 Jan 2016 News

Pastor Maldonado to lose F1 seat

Venezuelan to be replaced ahead of 2016 season

Controversial Venezuelan F1 driver Pastor Maldonado is set to lose his seat ahead of the 2016 season, according to UK motorsport media outlet Autosport.

Autosport reports Maldonado's main backer, Venezuelan oil giant PDVSA, has failed to deliver promised sponsorship payments, believed to be in the region of US$46million.

Maldonado's seat will be taken by former McLaren driver Kevin Magnussen, who finished 11th in his debut season in 2014 before being demoted in reserve driver in 2015.

Pastor -Maldanado -rearThe Venezuelan has shown flashes of speed during his five seasons in F1, including an impressive victory in the 2012 Spanish Grand Prix, however is notoriously incident-prone, becoming an internet sensation and inspiring the website www.hasmaldonadocrashedtoday.com.

Speaking to sister publication Wheels at the recent Australian Motoring Awards, Mark Webber nominated Maldonado as the worst driver in F1, saying "he's out of his depth and just shouldn't be there."

The 2016 F1 season kicks off in Melbourne on March 18.