Merhi looking for renewal
Manor boss Graeme Lowdon said he was happy with his current driver line-up as Roberto Merhi’s contract for the “opening races” runs out.
The Spaniard admitted that to have a long term deal to stay with the team because of the teams financial situation. Lowdon told Autosport that the team is impressed with him saying Manor “We ran Roberto in 2009 in European F3 and we were really impressed with him. We want to bring new talent through and we have done that but we have to do whatever is right for the team at the end of the day.”
When Merhi signed he said he will need to find sponsorship to gain a long term seat with Manor. Lowdon added there is no reason that he won’t stick around providing the team’s situation remains the same.
Upgrades to fight back
Mercedes say they will have aerodynamic improvements following their inquiry into what allowed Ferrari to win in Malaysia. The team lost the race after taking a comfortable one-two in Australia.
Technical boss Paddy Lowe said in the teams preview “We’ve spent time analysing the weekend in Sepang to identify areas for improvement. The most significant weakness was our tyre management during long runs.”
Lowe added the high temperatures in Malaysia had helped Ferrari and worked against Mercedes saying it’s essential to have a car which all conditions. Shanghi has lower temperatues which may play into their hands.
Lewis Hamilton added “There is always room for improvement and we’ve been working hard to analyse everything for the next race in China. The circuit itself is a different challenge to Albert Park and Sepang — but it’s one I really enjoy and it suits my driving style quite well.”
Former FIA president Max Mosley has said that F1 risks collapse unless a fairer way of sharing revenue and costs are cut. Last year a row began on how the sport could support the smaller teams after Caterham collapsed.
He claims at least 50% of the grid struggling to compete because of financial issues. He told DPA “At least half the teams simply can’t compete because they haven’t got enough money, and that to me is wrong. If one team has got five times as much money the effect is exactly the same as if they had a bigger engine.”
He also says F1 has gone too far pushing for hybrid engine technology, and he feels the majority of the public is not even that interested in it.
Fully fit – Bottas
Valtteri Bottas says he is expecting to be a “100%” fit for this weekends Chinese Grand Prix after suffering a injury in qualifying in Australia. He tore the annular part of a disc in the lower back.
Force India have delayed bring a major upgrade package until June, according to deputy team principal Bob Fernley.
He says the decision to switch wind tunnels is to blame for the delay and they had hoped to get the package running in Monaco. He Told Autosport “The development is going well, but we won’t see that until probably Austria. It’s a major B-spec car as we’re looking to introduce a significant upgrade.”
Fernley added “We felt we might as well try and hold with what we can and then hopefully we can bolt on an improvement.”