Manor completes line up
Roberto Merhi will make his F1 debut for Manor at this weekend’s season opener in Australia. However he will only compete during the opening rounds as he is committed to drive in the Renault 3.5 series that starts in late April.
The teams acting chairman Justin King son Jordan, has also been announced as the teams test driver while he completes in GP2. Team principal John Booth says “It is fantastic to welcome Roberto and Jordan to the team.”
“They have also been ‘graduates’ of Manor Motorsport in the junior formulae, which is obviously very rewarding for us.”
Merhi has already had some experience in F1 after taking part in three practice sessions with now-defunct Caterham last season.
Ferrari’s perfect combination
Ferrari boss Maurizio Arrivabene believes that Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen are the “perfect combination” for the team this season.
In an interview with Autosport he describes them as two different characters which are right to aid Ferrari’s competitive recovery. He described Vettel as a “Ferrari enthusiast” and Raikkonen as “the kind of person who doesn’t like to talk about stupid things; he likes to talk serious.”
Arrivabene says that Vettel reminds him of seven time world champion Michael Schumacher. Adding that he is “also a funny guy. He’s a super person with his feet on the ground; very simple but I’m not surprised he won four world titles. After Michael, Kimi was the only world champion for Ferrari.”
Alonso crash: The unanswered questions
The manager of Fernando Alonso and former Renault boss Flavio Briatore has called in to questions the accident that Alonso had during pre season testing. Briatore described the accident as “very strange”.
He told Italian TV that the crash “was not even that dramatic. The impact was not so hard. We have to see if there was a steering problem.” Mclaren has said they have evidence a mechanical failure – including rumours of an electric shock.
Last week claims were made that when Alonso came round after the accident he had forgotten the last 20 years of his life. Which has been denied as rubbish by Briatore.
Briatore is banned from FIA motorsport after being found guilty of race fixing the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix to allow Alonso win.
Ricciardo: I can take the pressure
Daniel Ricciardo believes he can handle the pressure of fighting for the win and the title ahead of season opener in Australia. The Australian finished second last year only to be disqualified after a fuel sensor issue.
He says that last year as in 2015 he doesn’t feel any more pressure and he answered the questions put to him this time last year. He said “It’s really a question of how much we have improved and if we’ve improved enough to close the gap on Mercedes. Testing has shown us that Mercedes are still really strong, I don’t want to be pessimistic at all, but they seem to be the team to beat at the moment”
He added that he think that it’s pretty close with Ferrari and Williams.