FIA allows both Merhi and Stevens to start in Malaysia

The FIA has taken a lenient approach with Manor Marussia and has allowed both drivers to start despite neither officially qualifying for the Malaysian GP.

Roberto Merhi did not make the 107% cut while Will Stevens did not run at all in qualifying after suffering electronic problems in FP2.

The stewards noted however that the two Marussia-Ferraris “had set satisfactory times in practice at this event” after both men had been inside the 107% in a particular practice session.

Team boss John Booth noted: We knew our first weekend of running would not be without its challenges and although we had a positive day yesterday, it has been important to keep our expectations for qualifying in check. Our two drivers have done a solid job in their debut and Friday’s practice showed promise in terms of having the pace for the 107% time, but today underlined that we have a lot of work to do.”


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3 responses to “FIA allows both Merhi and Stevens to start in Malaysia

  1. Matt

    What the hell is the point of the FIA if they make adhoc decisions at will that contravene their own rules??

    They demonstrated their lack of spine through their responses to the court in Melbourne and here again in Malaysia. I think Todt is too busy looking out for his own profile (possibly as a push for moving into French domestic politics) rather than providing credible leadership.

    It can’t be a coincidence that the FIA has become an absolute joke almost at the same time he took over the reigns.

    • Mick

      I disagree. In this instance I think the FIA is acting in the interests of the sport, helping a struggling team get back on its feet and keep the grid full. The major complaint at the last race was the lack of cars in the race.

      With Bernie seemingly desperate to get rid of them, FIA need to play good cop to Bernie’s bad cop.

    • Martin Collyer

      Matt, I think it’s the stewards who decide these things not M. Todt. Also, I think discretion is allowed in the rules over the 107% rule. It has happened before, can’t remember the exact circumstances, but I suspect Caterham, Virgin/Marussia/Manor and/or HRT benefited in previous years.

      Don’t forget, if you apply the 107% rule with no discretion permitted, you could ban a front-runner from a race.


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