Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Constructive First 2012 Test For Marussia Manor Racing GP3

The first pre-season test of the 2012 GP3 Series season got underway this week at the Estoril Circuit in Portugal. After nearly three months, the Marussia Manor Racing GP3 team were back on track with the fresh new driver line-up of Dmitry Suranovich, Fabiano Machado and Tio Ellinas at the wheel of the Dallara GP3 for the first time this season.

The test got underway yesterday with all three Marussia Manor Racing GP3 rookie drivers getting to grips with the track and the car. Tio set the third fastest lap of the morning (1:32.194), only 0.8s away from the quickest time. Fabiano had a good first morning and, despite a brief excursion into the gravel, he finished 10th with a best time of 1:32.489. Dmitry was 20th after completing 20 laps.

Yesterday afternoon all three Marussia Manor Racing drivers improved their morning times and were in the top 10 for most of the session. Tio was in good form again and ended up 7th (1:31.640), only 0.4s behind Nico Muller. Fabiano was the driver who completed the most laps in both sessions, a total of 74, ending the day 14th. Dmitry finished in 18th position. 

Today was another positive day of testing. Tio was second fastest in the morning and this afternoon he set the fastest time (1:31.083). He continued his good form from winter testing and demonstrated strong pace during both days. Fabiano and Dmitry showed consistent improvement during today’s two sessions as they continued to get used to the GP3 Series. Dmitry was 11th in both sessions while Fabiano was 12th in the morning and 23rd this afternoon.

The Marussia Manor Racing GP3 team will be back on track at the second pre-season test in Barcelona, 12-13 March.

Pete Sliwinski, Team Principal
“It’s good to be back out on track for the first time this season with our new driver line-up. The team has worked very hard over the winter and this first test is just what we needed as this is the first GP3 season for Tio, Fabiano and Dmitry. It has been a very constructive couple of days for us. We focused mainly on our drivers getting used to a new formula, even though we have also worked on developing the car set-up and gathered plenty of information. All three drivers have done a very good job.”

Tio Ellinas
“It’s good to be back in the car and I am very happy with this first test. We collected a lot of data that is going to be very useful for the future. I was also able to complete some very good runs and continue to get used to the car. I feel in very good form.”

Fabiano Machado
“This was my first time driving in GP3 with Marussia Manor Racing and I am very pleased with my debut. My first two days with the team have been very useful to understand this category even better. Everything is still very new to me and there is still a lot for me to learn, but I am quickly getting to grips with the car and I already feel like at home with the team.”

Dmitry Suranovich
“I am very happy with this first test of the season and with how the team is working. We were able to complete some good runs and I feel even more confident now than when I tested with the team at the end of last season. Racing in New Zealand’s Toyota Racing Series during the winter has also been very beneficial for me. This is going to be my first full season in GP3 and even though it’s still all quite new for me I think we are heading in the right direction and I feel more comfortable every time.”


Friday, February 17, 2012

Tio Ellinas completes Marussia Manor Racing GP3 Driver Line-up

Marussia Manor Racing is pleased to announce that Cypriot Tio Ellinas will join the team for the 2012 season, driving alongside Russian Dmtry Suranovich and Brazilian Fabiano Machado.

Tio impressed in winter testing running with Marussia Manor Racing in Valencia and Jerez, showing strong pace in all conditions. He adapted quickly to the category, underlining his potential and marking him out as one to watch in 2012.

The twenty year-old began his career in karting. From 2001 to 2009 he won 101 of the 131 races he competed in. He won the Cyprus ICA Junior Class three times as well as the Cyprus KF2 Karting Championship and the KZ2 Bridgestone Cup in 2009. That same year he also won the inaugural Grand Prix Shootout competition in the United Kingdom.

Tio stepped up to single-seater racing in 2010, competing in the British Formula Ford and winning 3 races on his way to 4th place and top rookie in the championship. In 2011 he switched to the Formula Renault UK Championship, winning two races and finishing in third position.

Marussia Manor Racing will be out on track for the first time this season at the first pre-season test that will take place on 21-22 February in Estoril, Portugal.

Tio Ellinas
“I am very happy to join Marussia Manor Racing. It’s a winning team and I am really looking forward to building on the progress made during the two tests. I felt immediately at home in the team and now I can’t wait to get back in the car again and race in my first GP3 season.”
Pete Sliwinski, Team Principal
“We are delighted to have Tio as part of the team this season. He did a very good job at the tests at the end of last year, demonstrating that he has the potential to be fighting at the top. Now we have our complete 2012 driver line-up we can focus totally on getting ready for the first test before the start of another exciting season.”

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Marussia Manor Racing GP3 Confirms Fabiano Machado for 2012 Season

Marussia Manor Racing GP3 is pleased to announce that South American Formula 3 Champion Fabiano Machado will join the team for the 2012 GP3 Series season.

The 25 year-old from São Paulo began his racing career in karting, showing great promise by winning the Paulista Championship and the Brazilian South Region Championship as well as finishing third in the PanAmerican Championship, Cup of Brazil and Brazilian Championships. In 2010 he won the RBC Karting Championship and he was rewarded with an F3 test. He stepped up to single-seater racing later that season, competing in 12 of the 24 South American F3 races with the Cesario Formula 3 Team.  He won four races and ended the season 4th in the Championship.

In 2011 he competed in 25 races and dominated the South American F3 Championship, achieving 17 wins, 15 fastest laps and 7 pole positions.

This season the Brazilian driver will make his racing debut in the European GP3 Series in front of the Formula One crowds at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona in May.

Fabiano will line up alongside Russia’s Dmitry Suranovich for Marussia Manor Racing, with the full driver line-up due to be completed before testing begins on 21 - 22 February in Estoril, Portugal. 

Fabiano Machado
“To race in the GP3 Series with a winning team like Marussia Manor Racing will be a big step forward in my learning process and in my career. I’m really pleased and excited to be racing for the first time in a European Championship. I want to thank the team and my sponsor Grupo Schahin for this opportunity and I will work as hard as possible to put together a strong campaign.”

Pete Sliwinski, Team Principal
“We are delighted to welcome Fabiano to Marussia Manor Racing for the 2012 season. To win the South American F3 Championship shows that he is a fast and talented young driver and I’m sure that in his first season in Europe he will continue to impress us. He will be a great asset to the team.”

Marussia Manor Racing GP3 Confirms Dmtry Suranovich for 2012 Season

Marussia Manor Racing GP3 is pleased to announce that Russia’s Dmitry Suranovich will drive for the team in this year’s GP3 Series. Dmitry tested with Marussia Manor Racing in Valencia and Jerez at the end of last year, showing great promise. This will be his first season in the Championship.

Minsk-born Dmitry started his racing career in karting. He started in KF-3 class in 2008, becoming a European and World Cup finalist. In 2009 he became the Russian KF-3 Champion and a year later won the KF-2 Championship. In 2011 he raced in four events of the Formula Abarth European Series and this winter the 16-year-old also took part in New Zealand’s Toyota Racing Series, showing great potential in single-seater racing and obtaining his first podium finish.
Dmitry is the first Marussia Manor Racing driver to be confirmed this year, with the team set to complete its full driver line-up in the next few weeks.

Dmitry Suranovich
“I’m really happy to have secured a drive for Marussia Manor Racing, a winning team which is strongly linked to Formula One. It’s going to be an exciting season and I can’t wait to get started. It’s going to be a challenge, but I am ready for it. At the winter tests last year I already felt comfortable in the car and working with the team. Now we can continue to work hard together in order to achieve the best result possible in my first season in GP3.”

Pete Sliwinski, Team Principal
“We are happy to welcome Dmitry to the team. At the tests in Spain at the end of the year he already understood the category quickly and demonstrated his potential. We are confident that he will do a good job this year.”

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Positive 2011 Season Continues With First Winter Test For Marussia Manor Racing

Marussia Manor Racing was back out on track this week (25-26 October) at the first post-season GP3 Series test that took place at the Circuit de Catalunya in Spain. Matias Laine was back at the wheel of the car for the first time since the 2011 season ended. Colombian-American driver Gabby Chaves was testing in the second Marussia Manor Racing car after finishing the GP3 season in 11th position with the Addax Team.

It was a positive test for Marussia Manor Racing. On Tuesday Gabby quickly got to grips with the car and was always within1.5s of the lead times, ending up 9th in the first session and 15th in the second session. It wasn’t until the afternoon when Matias showed his real pace, finishing in 2nd position and only 0.59s from the best time set by Mitch Evans.

On Wednesday Matias continued to demonstrate his good form. The results on the previous day gave him a big boost and he ended up in 2nd position again in both the morning and afternoon sessions, only 0.2 and 0.4s away from Mitch Evans. Gabby also continued to improve and finished in 10th and 8th positions on his second day of testing with Marussia Manor Racing and never more than a second away from the fastest time.

The GP3 Series will be back on track in November 23-24 for the second post season test, again taking place in Spain, but this time it will be at the track in Valencia.

Pete Sliwinski, Team Principal
“It was good to be back on track after more than a month and a half. We haven’t stopped working and we arrived in Barcelona ready to continue with our 2011 season performance and evaluate our drivers, preparing for next year. Winter testing is good for them as they drive without all the pressure that normally exists during the season. Matias has demonstrated very good pace this week and I’m sure this will give him plenty of confidence for the next season. After his first season in GP3 he has clearly shown that he now understands the category and I’m sure he can keep up these good results. Gabby Chaves was also testing with us this week and he has done a good job. He completed a good season with Addax and we are happy for him to have tested with us. Now we will analyse all the data from these two days in Barcelona and get ready for the next test in November in Valencia."

Matias Laine
“I'm very happy and pleased with the results after the test in Barcelona. I felt very comfortable during both days and I'm finally demonstrating that I can be up there fighting for top positions. There's still a lot of work to do and its very early days, but this is a very good start and I will work hard to continue like this. I feel more confident and this will help me during the next months."

Gabby Chaves
“It has been a very positive couple of days for me in Barcelona. After my first season in GP3, it has been great to be able to test with Marussia Manor Racing. I felt comfortable in the team and in the car very quickly. On the second day I was not far off from the top times so I am happy.”

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Top 3 Finish For Marussia Manor Racing in the 2011 GP3 Championship

At the eighth and final round of the 2011 GP3 Series Championship at the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza in Italy, Marussia Manor Racing ended the season in 3rd position after Rio Haryanto’s double podium finish this weekend and Adrian’s 6th position in today’s race.

The weekend got off to a good start in Italy for Marussia Manor Racing as Adrian Quaife-Hobbs showed early pace in both Practice sessions on Friday. He finished 2nd in the morning and 3rd in the afternoon, always within 0.1s from the fastest time. Rio and Matias also got to grips with the high-speed full, throttle track.

On Saturday Adrian took his second pole position of the season in the final seconds of the Qualifying session, finishing only 0.062s ahead of Nico Muller. Rio led the first part of the session but was finally bumped down to 3rd. Matias was classified in 20th position, 1s away from Adrian’s fastest timed lap.

With two drivers in the first three positions, it looked like a promising first race for Marussia Manor Racing. Adrian got off to a good start and stayed in the lead. Rio lost a position at the start but soon made a move passing Valteri Bottas for 3rd. Muller then snatched the lead from Adrian who, on lap 10, made a mistake at Ascari and hit the wall and the Safety Car was deployed. At the restart, with only 3 laps to go, Rio and Muller battled hard for the final podium place and it was finally the Marussia Manor Racing driver who grabbed it. Matias finished in 20th position.

In today’s race, the last of the season, Rio and Adrian drove excellent races. After yesterday’s crash, Adrian started from 24th position but after some brilliant moves he finished 6th and achieved a valuable point. Rio started the race 6th and was fighting for another podium finish during the whole race, to end 2nd. Unfortunately, Matias didn’t finish the race because of a flat tyre.

Pete Sliwinski, Team Principal
“What a great way to end the season! Today’s race was real racing. We had the pace during the whole weekend and it was great to watch Rio and Adrian fight so hard and perform great moves on track. This is what it’s all about! I’m very happy to have seen Rio on the podium on two occasions this weekend. The team have done an excellent job this season and it was a shame that the good results didn’t start coming earlier. We had to wait until the third race of the season for our first win, so we knew it was going to be difficult to win the Championship but we never stopped trying and at the end of the season the good results haven’t stopped coming our way. So overall I’m pleased with this season and I want to congratulate the whole team. Congratulations also to Adrian who of course wins the prize of an F1 test with Marussia Virgin Racing in Abu Dhabi.””

Adrian Quaife-Hobbs
“I really didn’t expect to finish in the points today after starting from so far back on the grid, so it was a good race – and I did it with a broken front wing as well! A good result for me and the team. I finish 4th in the Championship, which is a great result, and now I just can’t wait to get to Abu Dhabi where I will be testing the MVR-02.”

Rio Haryanto
“It has been a very positive weekend for me – one I won’t forget! To be on the podium on both Saturday and Sunday is such a great result, I’m very happy with this weekend. We have worked hard this season and results like this are the reward. The team has done a very good job and I want to thank everyone for an excellent weekend.”

Matias Laine
“What a shame to end the season without being able to finish the race. It’s disappointing, but I’m happy because the team has finished third in the Championship. We deserve it. We have worked hard and I want to thank the team for all their hard work – I have really learned a lot this year.”

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Marussia Manor Racing adds more points to its tally in Spa

The seventh and penultimate round of the 2011 GP3 Series took place this weekend at the Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium. Marussia Manor Racing demonstrated a strong performance once again, making it the fourth weekend in a row and the eighth race in which the team added points to its tally.

The weekend started in a positive way in the first and only Practice session on Friday, with all three drivers Adrian Quaife-Hobbs, Rio Haryanto and Matias Laine driving at constant pace and never below 1.5s from the fastest time set by Championship leader Valtteri Bottas. Adrian was the fastest Marussia Manor Racing driver that morning, battling for top positions during the whole session and ending up 4th. Matias was 11th and Rio 16th.

Saturday’s qualifying session took place in difficult conditions because of the heavy rain overnight and the notoriously changeable conditions here in Spa. The track was damp but drying, so it was important to follow a good tyre strategy. Adrian was battling with front-runners Alexander Sims and Bottas, the three of them swapping fastest lap times as the track continued to dry. James Calado finally took his first pole position of the season, with Adrian finishing 2.5s away from him in 5th position. Rio ended up 20th and Matias 26th.

The first race of the weekend on Saturday afternoon got off to a good start for all three drivers, with Adrian making a move on Nigel Melker whilst exiting La Source to take third position. From then on he was fighting for a podium finish until the end of the race, showing good race pace even though Bottas, leading the race, was soon under control and too quick for anyone. Both Rio and Matias were able to gain positions after starting from the back of the grid and finished 12th and 18th respectively, keeping out of trouble. Adrian finally finished 4th and added 5 more valuable points to his tally.

Today’s second race at Spa-Francorchamps began positively for Marussia Manor Racing, as Adrian, who was starting from 5th position, stormed up to 2nd after only four laps. Unfortunately, he had to retire due to a turbo failure. Rio staged a strong comeback, finishing 9th while Matias didn’t classify after spinning early in the race.

The eighth and final GP3 Series race weekend will take place on the 9-11 September in Monza.

Pete Sliwinski, Team Principal
“It’s always good to end up in the points during the weekend so we are pleased with this, but it’s disappointing because we could have ended up in the points again today. But we are all doing a good job and we have to continue the good work. There is only one more race weekend remaining, so we have to keep focused and aim for the best possible results in Monza.”

Rio Haryanto
“A typical Spa-Francorchamps weekend. The changeable conditions here make it a very tough race weekend. But we did our best and worked hard, and now we have to carry on like this to end the season on a high.”

Adrian Quaife-Hobbs
“It was so frustrating today! I was really feeling comfortable in the car and early in the race I was running in second position after a great start. Then all of a sudden I felt the car lost some power and everyone started to pass me – I couldn’t do anything. It’s a shame because the weekend had started well, finishing 4th yesterday and if I had scored some more points today I could have ended up third in the Championship. But there is still one more race to go before the end of the season and I just have to keep on pushing.”

Matias Laine
“On Friday the speed was good and on Saturday during the qualifying in the wet I was also fast, but in the end the track started to dry and I was late in to put my dry tyres on. I felt comfortable in both races and my speed stats to be good but now I just need to avoid small mistakes and the results will come.”