Australian GP: Manor F1 team escapes FIA penalty for not running

Manor has escaped without a penalty for failing to get its Formula 1 cars onto the track over the Australian Grand Prix weekend

Australian GP: Manor F1 team escapes FIA penalty for not running

The outfit had been summoned by the FIA to explain why Will Stevens and Roberto Merhi had not run at all during the event.

Problems getting the required software in place following the former Marussia team's late rescue from administration meant neither car was able to leave the garages in Melbourne.

Under article 13.2 of F1's sporting regulations, when teams enter the championship they must show that they plan to "participate in every event with the number of cars and drivers entered."

Following written evidence submitted to the stewards, as well as discussions with senior team members, the FIA eventually decided that there had been no breach of the rules.

A statement issued by the stewards said that because Manor had attended the event, brought equipment and staff with it and got its cars ready and through scrutineering, it had done all that it could.

Furthermore, the team was able to demonstrate that even if it had broken F1's curfew regulations it would still not have had enough time to sort out the software problems.

The stewards' statement said: "The stewards accepted that the team explained it had used all reasonable endeavours to ensure that its cars were able to compete in active competition, therefore the stewards take no further action during the event."

On Saturday, team boss John Booth dismissed any suggestion that Manor had only made a token gesture of attendance to ensure prize-money eligibility.

"I can understand people being cynical but if that was the case we wouldn't have brought 30 tonnes of equipment, 40 people, fulfilled all of our contracts with all suppliers, whether it's Pirelli, Ferrari, whoever, with our best endeavours to go round and round a circuit," he said.

He also insisted that going through the process of trying to race in Australia had been more productive for Manor than working towards a debut in Malaysia instead.

"I don't think we could have prepared the same if we weren't here," Booth said.

"We needed to be here to get a lot of the systems working. We couldn't have done it back at base."

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