Firestone Indy Lights champion and Peugeot Le Mans reserve driver Jean-Karl Vernay will make his Formula Renault 3.5 debut with Pons Racing at Spa this weekend. Vernay will occupy the team's second seat in place of Kiwi Dominic Storey in what is understood to be, at the moment, a one-off.
"Unfortunately, I think it is unlikely that Dominic will return this season," said team manager Jordi Pons. "For Monaco there are many drivers interested in running with us, especially GP3 drivers wanting to learn the track.
"I really hope that we are able to finalize a deal with Jean-Karl for the rest of the season though. I hope he can find the budget, but, of course, we know he also has a deal with Peugeot and we have to see what happens this weekend."
Vernay had hoped to graduate to the IndyCar Series for 2011 after winning the Lights title in his first season, but he was unable to find sufficient funding. Peugeot recently signed the Frenchman as the standby driver for its Le Mans 24 Hours bid.