A defiant Jolyon Palmer insists he will be retained by Renault for the remainder of the year amid reports that Sunday’s Singapore Grand Prix could be his last in the sport.

Palmer’s long-term future has been cast in doubt after it emerged that Carlos Sainz is set to replace him in 2018.

Sainz’s probable move to Renault falls under a complex deal which will see the French manufacturer end their engine relationship with Red Bull’s sister team Toro Rosso and instead partner McLaren next year. In turn, Honda, the Japanese manufacturer who have endured three miserable years with McLaren, will team up with Toro Rosso.

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Sainz’s proposed switch to Renault could be announced on Friday, and there have been paddock murmurings that the Spanish driver will join the French outfit with immediate effect.

But Palmer, who is one of only two drivers yet to score a single point this year, is confident that he will see out the remainder of his deal.

“I have a contract and I have seven more races this year,” Palmer 26, said. “There have been suggestions for 35 races that I might not be in the next one, or in the next few.

Palmer is yet to win a point this season (David Davies/PA)Palmer is yet to win a point this season (David Davies/PA)

“This is nothing new for me. It is water off a duck’s back. It has been the case for most races this year, and nothing has changed. I know what is happening, and I think there will be an announcement at some point in the future, probably soon.”

With Sainz, 23, poised to replace Palmer at Renault, the Englishman faces a fight to salvage a seat next year.

Williams and Sauber are yet to confirm their driver line-ups for 2018, while Force India – who are also yet to formally announce their plans – want to keep both Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon.

Palmer has struggled in his second season for both form and reliability and has been out-qualified by his Renault team-mate Nico Hulkenberg at every race. Hulkenberg has also scored 34 points.

“It has been a tough year,” Palmer added. “When the car is not working you can’t score points. At Silverstone, I did not start the race, and in Azerbaijan we broke down after five or six laps.

“It has not been ideal to have that level of reliability. Even in the practice sessions we have lost time, and that puts you on the back foot for the weekend.

“We keep getting different problems, but hopefully we have put a stop to that now, and the car is going to be strong in the next few races. If we have good reliability I can show what I can do and score some points.”