Nicholas Latifi handed Sochi FP1 run in place of Sergio Perez

Force India tester Nicholas Latifi will have his third Formula 1 practice outing of 2018 at next weekend’s Russian Grand Prix.

Latifi joined Force India as back-up to Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon this year and piloted the VJM11 during FP1s in Canada and Germany.

Force India confirmed on Wednesday that Latifi will replace Perez for the opening 90-minute session around the Sochi Autodrom.

Latifi also sampled Force India’s 2018 car during in-season running in Spain and Hungary, having previously held a test driver position with Renault.

"It’s important to keep learning and building on my F1 experience," said Latifi.

"This will be my third FP1, and with each one I’m getting more and more comfortable in the car. My main goal is to do a good job for the team – to bring the car back in one piece with good data and feedback after some quality running.

“I have been to Sochi only once before, back in 2015, but it’s important I build the speed as quickly as possible. What we do in that session is going to directly influence the race weekend.”

The Canadian holds ninth position in this year’s Formula 2 championship, having picked up his first win of the campaign in Belgium last month.

Latifi is set to be the second current F2 racer in action during Friday's session, with Artem Markelov poised to run for Renault.