Formula One heads to round six of the 2015 season at the Monaco Grand Prix this weekend and it is a very special race for the Manor F1 team who with their driver Jules Bianchi last season scored his and the team’s first points in the sport.
Twelve months on from that achievement, Manor have gone through entering and exiting administration; with Bianchi still in a stable condition after his tragic accident in the Japanese Grand Prix last season.
Manor F1 Team Principal John Booth has stated that even though it is fantastic to be racing in Monaco this weekend, the race last season is still fresh in their minds and they want to commemorate what Bianchi achieved for the team this weekend as he believes that is the reason why the team are on the grid today.
“It is always a fantastic feeling to be racing in Monaco,” said Booth. “It’s a very special occasion for the whole sport, but for our team it carries an even greater significance as the scene of so much jubilation 12 months ago when Jules delivered our first constructors’ championship points. That was an incredible, unforgettable day and it is very important to everyone in the team that we honour what Jules achieved for us. It’s a big part of the reason we are back racing today.
“Consequently, despite our obvious sadness, this weekend we will remember and celebrate what was a very important milestone in the team’s history and what was, above all, a mighty race performance from Jules.”
Manor driver Will Stevens is very excited to be racing in his first Monaco Grand Prix this weekend and believes that this is a circuit that is a ‘real driver’s circuit’, and understands that being precise is key to a great performance. But he is also thinking of what Bianchi achieved for the team last weekend and will be looking to have a strong performance this weekend.
“I’m so excited to be racing in my first Monaco Grand Prix this weekend,” said Stevens. “It’s such a historic venue and the atmosphere is spectacular. From a racing point of view it’s a real drivers’ circuit, one which really showcases ability versus car performance. Precision is key as the smallest mistake can end up costing a driver dearly, but that’s all part of the unique challenge and I can’t wait to get started on Thursday.
“It will be an emotional weekend for the team as we remember Jules’ amazing achievement here last year. I was only watching then, but that was some race! We’ll all be pushing to ensure another strong performance and a two-car finish.”
Meanwhile his team mate Roberto Merhi also echoes Stevens’ sentiments and cannot wait to race in Monaco this weekend for the first time in Formula One. He understands that this is a special race for his team and hopes that he can put in a strong performance this weekend.
“I can’t wait to be racing in Monaco,” said Merhi. “For sure, this is one of the highlights of the season for any driver. The track is a real adventure in any category but I’m thrilled to be racing here in F1 for the first time and on the 65th anniversary of such an historic circuit.
“The streets of Monaco are really exhilarating to drive, like Casino Square and the Swimming Pool section and it’s a really amazing vibe all weekend. This is a special place for the team, so I hope we can have a good performance in the race for everybody.”