It was announced today that the Manor F1 Team will sit out the first of the Formula 1 in-season tests scheduled for Barcelona next week despite receiving offers from other drivers to take part.
There are rumours circulating the paddock at the moment that prominent GP2 driver approached Manor about the prospect of an outing, and was prepared to pay a reasonable sum of money for the drive.
But Manor sporting director Graeme Lowdon believes there would be little gain for the team being involved in the test scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday at the Circuit de Catalunya. In his interview with the media today, Lowdon believes that they have nothing to gain from taking part in the test and believe they could spend the money elsewhere. Lowdon stated the following:-
‘We’ve nothing to test, so there’s not a lot of point in us doing it, with our resources better spent elsewhere at the moment. The guys have done a really good job in getting on top of this car quickly, so we know the car pretty well and we know what it’s capable of from last year.
‘This year we can already see we are getting quite a bit out of it, so there is nothing to be achieved from a technical point of view.’
As Lowdon says, it does make sense for Manor F1 not to take part sadly in the test next week and to concentrate on making sure that the new car is as ready as it can be, even though the data that they are achieving so far with the car they are running is helping them at the moment and also with the new car as well.
When asked further in his interview with the media today about the approaches from other drivers, Lowdon added the following:-
‘There were some possibilities in that area, but it was the wrong time and focus for us. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it would be a distraction, that would be incorrect, but it’s just not the optimum thing for us to be doing.”
‘Yes, the money would be welcome, but equally these cars are pretty expensive to run. At the moment we have a really clear plan we are going along with, and that’s because our season is different to everybody else. It’s just the wrong time and place to really make use of the test the way the other teams will do, so the value is not there for us to do it.’
Even though Lowdon admits that they were possibilties to test next week in Barcelona, he feels that the decision not to take part is best for the team at the moment and we have to respect his decision with this as for me personally it makes valid financial sense. But overall, yes it is a shame that Manor F1 will not be there at the test next week.
But at the end of the day, if the team feel like its not going to benefit them at this time, then maybe its best that they don’t spend money that they don’t have and concentrate their efforts on getting the 2015 car to the track as quickly as they can.