Alexander Rossi replaces Roberto Merhi at Manor for five F1 GPs

Alexander Rossi will finally make his Formula 1 debut in Singapore as Manor has signed the American to replace Roberto Merhi for five of 2015's seven remaining grands prix

Alexander Rossi replaces Roberto Merhi at Manor for five F1 GPs

The 23-year-old will race in Singapore, Japan, the United States, Mexico and Brazil, with Merhi returning for the rounds in Russia and Abu Dhabi as Rossi completes his GP2 commitments.

Rossi becomes the first American to compete in F1 since Scott Speed's final appearance for Toro Rosso in the 2007 European Grand Prix at the Nurburgring.

The Californian was reserve at the then-Marussia team for a time last season, taking part in practice at the Belgian GP, where he had briefly seemed set for a race drive in place of Max Chilton before it fell through.

"I'm very thankful to race for Manor and for their continued belief in me," said Rossi.

"I've been prepared for this opportunity for quite a while now.

"Many will know from 2014 that the team and I already have a strong relationship and there's a bit of unfinished business for me here.

"This is a small F1 team that has been through so much. They exemplify passion and true strength of character, and their comeback this season is extraordinary.

"I'm honoured to be part of this legacy and their continued growth and success.

"Singapore is a circuit I really enjoy, and the timing of my debut could not be more perfect.

"There's a lot of work ahead and I'm looking forward to a busy end to the 2015 season."

Team principal John Booth feels Rossi, overlooked for a seat at newcomer Haas next season as it prioritises experienced drivers, is "on the cusp of an exciting F1 career".

Booth added: "Signing Alexander is a continuation of our proud record of providing young drivers with the opportunity to showcase their talents.

"We believe he will do a great job and look forward to seeing him race for the first time this weekend in Singapore.

"It is also fantastic news for the sport that it will have an American driver again, particularly with the United States Grand Prix on our horizon and now two races in South America, in Mexico and Brazil.

"I know Alexander is very excited about that and we look forward to providing him with the opportunity to show the American public what he can do."

Merhi will remain present for Rossi's five races as one of the team's official reserves, alongside Fabio Leimer.

"While Roberto is obviously disappointed, he understands that this decision is in the long-term interests of the team and we thank him for his professionalism," said Booth.

"No decision has been made regarding our 2016 driver line-up and we will continue to evaluate our options during the remainder of the season."

shares
comments
Nico Rosberg takes fourth engine of F1 2015 for Singapore GP

Previous article

Nico Rosberg takes fourth engine of F1 2015 for Singapore GP

Next article

Ask Gary: Is Ferrari catching up for 2016?

Ask Gary: Is Ferrari catching up for 2016?
Load comments
Why Alfa's boss is ready for the task of securing a stronger F1 future Plus

Why Alfa's boss is ready for the task of securing a stronger F1 future

Two tenth places in recent races have lifted Alfa Romeo to the head of Formula 1's 'Class C' battle in 2021, but longer-term the Swiss-based squad has far loftier ambitions. With the new 2022 rules set to level out the playing field, team boss Frederic Vasseur has good reason to be optimistic, as he explained to Autosport in an exclusive interview

How Barnard’s revolutionary McLaren transformed F1 car construction Plus

How Barnard’s revolutionary McLaren transformed F1 car construction

The MP4/1 was pioneering by choice, but a McLaren by chance. STUART CODLING relates the tangled (carbonfibre) weaves which led to the creation of one of motor racing’s defining cars

Why the end is nigh for F1’s most dependable design tool Plus

Why the end is nigh for F1’s most dependable design tool

Windtunnel work forms the bedrock of aerodynamic development in Formula 1. But as PAT SYMONDS explains, advances in virtual research are signalling the end of these expensive and complicated relics

Formula 1
Jun 13, 2021
Why polarising Mosley’s legacy amounts to far more than tabloid rumour Plus

Why polarising Mosley’s legacy amounts to far more than tabloid rumour

The newspapers, naturally, lingered over Max Mosley’s tainted family history and niche sexual practices. But this is to trivialise the legacy of a big beast of motor racing politics. STUART CODLING weighs the life of a man whose work for safety on both road and track has saved hundreds of thousands of lives, but whose penchant for cruelty remains problematic and polarising

Formula 1
Jun 12, 2021
Why pragmatic Perez isn't fazed by no-nonsense Red Bull F1 culture Plus

Why pragmatic Perez isn't fazed by no-nonsense Red Bull F1 culture

Sergio Perez has spent most of his career labouring in Formula 1’s midfield, wondering whether he’d ever get another shot at the big time. Red Bull has handed him that chance and, although life at the top is tough, the Baku winner is doing all the right things to get on terms with Max Verstappen, says BEN ANDERSON

Formula 1
Jun 11, 2021
What the data tells us about the F1 2021 title fight Plus

What the data tells us about the F1 2021 title fight

Formula 1 has been tracking car performance using timing loops mounted every 200m around each circuit – to the extent that it was able to anticipate Ferrari’s 'surprise’ pole in Monaco. PAT SYMONDS explains what this means for this season and beyond

Formula 1
Jun 10, 2021
The weighty issue F1 needs to find a balance with Plus

The weighty issue F1 needs to find a balance with

OPINION: After consecutive street races with contrasting highlights, one theme stood out which has become a prevalent issue with modern Formula 1 cars. But is there a way to solve it or, at least, reach a happy middle ground to help all parties?

Formula 1
Jun 10, 2021
The changes behind a ‘feel-good’ F1 result in Baku Plus

The changes behind a ‘feel-good’ F1 result in Baku

OPINION: The Azerbaijan Grand Prix had elements that make Formula 1 really exciting – unpredictability and shock results. This resulted in heartbreak for several of the championship’s regular contenders and joy for others who rarely reach the ultimate limelight. And one of those on the Baku podium is riding a wave of form he’s keen to continue

Formula 1
Jun 9, 2021