Staff Emeritus | Motorsport Engineer
- Mar 14, 2013
Manor F1 team have confirmed that Will Stevens will be racing for the former Marussia outfit in the 2015 Formula One season. They have also confirmed that the car is at an 'advanced stage of build.'
After many rumours and fierce debate about the the return of, and issues surrounding, Manor F1 team, they now seem to be on track for a return to the grid in Melbourne. The team was reportedly blocked from entering the sport again in 2015, however the team seem adamant that they will be back.
Marussia entered administration towards the end of 2014, and it's assets were to be liquidated in order to pay creditors of the team. However, at the last minute, a still unknown investor stepped in to seemingly prevent the team from folding. Marussia's base in Banbury has been sold to Haas F1 Team to serve as their European base. The team, now called Manor, exited administration earlier this month. Manor are now operating out of their former GP3 base in Dinnington.
Will Stevens, 23, tested for the team in the 2014 season, and drove for the season finale for Marussia's now defunct rivals Caterham. The Essex-born Brit had a mediocre run in junior series, racing in Formula Renault 2.0 and 3.5 for a number of years, testing for Caterham in 2013 and 2014 whilst driving for Strakka Racing in World Series 3.5. He qualified and finished last, around half a second behind teammate Kamui Kobayashi during Q1 at the Abu Dhabi finale of last season.
Full Manor F1 Team press release:
The Manor Marussia F1 Team is making huge strides towards the 2015 FIA Formula One World Championship season opener in Melbourne, Australia, in just over two weeks’ time.
The next exciting step for the team is to make the first of its driver line-up announcements, with the news that Will Stevens will be an official 2015 Manor race driver.
Will, 23, is known to the team from his brief time in the role of Marussia Reserve Driver towards the end of the 2014 season. He went on to race for Caterham in the season finale in Abu Dhabi and produced the impressive performance anticipated of a driver who has won races in every category in which he has competed, against some of the very best junior drivers.
A fundamental element of the Manor philosophy has always been to provide opportunity for the next generation of motor racing talent, a part of the team’s long and proud history that will be retained into the future. Manor has started many young drivers out on the path to success, including Formula One world champions Lewis Hamilton and Kimi Raikkonen.
The approval by the Company’s creditors on 19 February 2015 to a Company Voluntary Arrangement paves the way for the team to exit from administration and since that time everyone involved with Manor has been working flat out on the key components of its 2015 challenge.
The car with which Manor will begin the season is now in an advanced stage of build at the team’s current race preparation facility in Dinnington, UK, where personnel are working 24-7 towards the air freight despatch date of 6 March.
As the sport counts down to the curtain-raising 2015 Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix in 18 days’ time, Manor is now in a position to be able to provide regular updates on its preparations for Melbourne and wider plans for the season, including the completion of its driver line-up.
Commenting on the announcement of his race seat today, Will Stevens said: “It’s very exciting to see everything coming together at Manor after the tremendous effort that has gone into saving the team. It would not have been possible without the incredible support we have received from all the suppliers and from within the sport, but most of all the fantastic team of people at Manor who are working around the clock to ensure we are ready for Melbourne. My thanks to the team for their confidence in me and I can’t wait to see all the hard work rewarded when we line up on the grid in two weeks’ time."