Tavo Hellmund has revealed that an offer was made to the Manor Racing MRT squad, but the result of the Brazilian Grand Prix and subsequent failure to score points in Abu Dhabi saw any potential deal collapse.
Manor will be absent from the grid in 2017 after dropping behind the Sauber F1 Team in the championship standings in Brazil when Felipe Nasr finished ninth, despite Pascal Wehrlein breaking into the points for only the second time in the teams’ history when coming tenth in the Austrian Grand Prix.
Hellmund revealed talks with Manor had been ongoing for around eighteen months, with a £22 million bid put in, and had the team held onto tenth in the championship, it is likely that a deal would have been done and the team would have been on the grid again in 2017.
“At one point we had agreed to terms,” revealed Hellmund on f1i.com. “We made two stabs at it. We offered 22 million pounds a year and one-half ago. The first go-round, we were even going to involve Anthony Hamilton, Lewis’ dad.
“We were looking to form a partnership with one of the big manufacturers, Mercedes or Honda. We had conversations with both. That way you can get motors — discounted motors — and get a driver.
“They were starting to come to our terms, and then Brazil happened. In the dry, Manor was the faster car.”