2015 Formula 1 Shell Belgian Grand Prix – The Race

Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium
Sunday 23 August 2015

MERHI │ Chassis 03 P15 1:58.174
STEVENS │ Chassis 02 P16 1:58.150

The Manor Marussia F1 Team started the second half of the season as it means to go on, with a solid and reliable weekend in Spa translating into a clearly improved race performance and a further two-car finish to add to its burgeoning tally.

Today it was Roberto Merhi who gained the upper hand in the 2015 Formula 1 Shell Belgian Grand Prix, which was reduced from 44 laps to 43 after a stall by Hulkenberg necessitated an additional formation lap. The Spanish driver crossed the line in 15th position, directly behind the McLarens of his countryman Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button. Will Stevens took 16th place, after a closely-fought race between the two team-mates.

Roberto Merhi #98
“It was a good race for me. I got ahead of my team-mate on the first lap and things stayed that way until the finish. It was a bit of a lonely race for me to be honest, and mainly about managing my tyres so that I could push when I needed to. I think the strategy worked out well to limit the blue flags, and this enabled us to maintain reasonable pace. It’s always a real pleasure to drive here at Spa; you never get tired of experiencing Eau Rouge. And of course we start the second half of the season with another two-car finish, so a good solid weekend.”

Will Stevens #28
“My start was really good. I managed to get in front of Nasr in the first corner and then I came out and I was sandwiched in the middle of two cars, and with no room. I was hit and that compromised me quite a bit. I lost position and although the pace was really good, I wasn’t able to regain the place. So, a race that hasn’t really gone my way in terms of the result, but a positive weekend overall and of course we achieved another two-car finish as a team.”

John Booth, Team Principal
“It’s good to start the second half of the season on a very positive note, with a straightforward and solid weekend, and a two-car finish to show for it. Both drivers did a creditable job throughout and particularly in the race, making the most of good pace. This, together with the strategic calls from the pit wall, enabled us to keep in touch with the McLarens. We are where we are at present, but Roberto and Will are pushing hard to make the most of every opportunity that comes our way – including pushing each other – so the improvement is continual and this can only aid our development for next year.”