MARUS­SIA

First points for these bat­tling back­mark­ers

F1 Racing - - IN­SIDER -

Con­grat­u­la­tions to John Booth and his Marus­sia team. They’ve barely had chance to come up for air this past six months, and they thor­oughly de­serve the points they scored in the (some­what chaotic) Monaco Grand Prix.

Per­son­ally, I find it hard to imag­ine what the pres­sure must be like for them: is the cash­flow se­cure? How are we go­ing to pay the sub-con­trac­tors in the mean­time? Will the staff go with the ow? He’s tough, though, is John Booth – and he’s not one for just sit­ting be­hind a desk.

Part of the pro­gramme is un­der­writ­ten by Max Chilton’s in­vest­ment fund – so credit to them, too, for stick­ing with it. And given the cir­cum­stances, I think Max has driven well: he hasn’t been dis­graced by Jules Bianchi in qual­i­fy­ing and he seems to have a de­cent rac­ing brain.

Bianchi is man­aged by Ni­co­las Todt, which is a big as­set, lead­ing to such bonuses as Fer­rari test drives when Kimi doesn’t feel like per­form­ing but, to me, Bianchi still looks a bit like Jean-Eric Vergne in year one – as dis­tinct from the fu­ture Fer­nando Alonso that some of his fans pro­claim him to be. He’s all pace and re­flexes, in other words, but not huge on fi­nesse. Vergne has evolved, how­ever, so let’s see how it goes with Jules.

There’s no doubt that a huge in­flux of dol­lars would make a mas­sive dif­fer­ence at Marus­sia. Some teams, you know, would squan­der such a wind­fall. Marus­sia, I think, would max­imise it.

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