Another race and another milestone was reached by the Manor F1 Team, with both Will Stevens and Roberto Merhi able to start and finish the Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai.
The team remain off the pace, and finished two laps adrift in fifteenth for Stevens and sixteenth for Merhi but the team felt progress was being made, and seeing both drivers see the chequered flag so early in their campaign with the updated 2014 Marussia car with a 2014 Ferrari engine was encouraging.
Stevens had been forced to miss both the Australian and Malaysian Grand Prix due to software and fuel system problems respectively, but was finally able to make his Manor F1 bow in China, and was delighted to see both cars cross the finishing line.
“A great race for me and the team and one which shows how far we’ve come in a very short space of time,” said Stevens. “Obviously it feels really good for me to be racing again and to finish the race with both cars is so important for us at this stage of our development.
“We always knew that when we sorted out the challenges we’d have a reliable car. I didn’t get the best of starts but those sorts of issues are easily resolved and I’m sure we’ll see a lot more progress over the next few races.”
Team-mate Merhi agreed with Stevens, and was happy to see the chequered flag for the second time in two races, having made his F1 debut in Malaysia two weeks ago.
“I’m really pleased that we’ve completed another race and this time with both cars, steps which are really important for the team,” insisted Merhi.
“Looking back across the whole weekend we’ve made a lot of progress since Malaysia and the pace is improving all the time from session to session. I hope we can continue this progress in Bahrain next weekend.”