Marussia’s administrators say the team will exit administration on February 19
Company Voluntary Arrangement agreed with team's creditors; squad planning to race in season-opening Australian Grand Prix
By William Esler
Last Updated: 04/02/15 12:14pm
Marussia’s administrators have announced that the beleaguered team will exit administration on February 19 via a Company Voluntary Arrangement.
The Banbury-based squad missed the final three races of the 2014 season after their Russian backer, Andrey Cheglakov, pulled his backing following the Grand Prix in Sochi.
Cheglakov's Marussia Motors company had folded in April 2014 without producing a road car during its seven years in business.
A planned auction of the team’s remaining assets was cancelled in January – something former president Graeme Lowdon said was key to their survival – and they hold an official entry for the 2015 F1 season as Manor Grand Prix Limited.
"It is envisaged that, prior to the commencement of the first race of the 2015 season, investment into the business will be made upon the Company exiting from administration via a Company Voluntary Arrangement (“CVA”), which is planned for 19 February 2015," a statement from the administrators at FRP Advisory read.
"A CVA is a restructuring process agreed with the Company’s creditors which allows for a turnaround of the business and the creation of a longer term viable solution for the team."
Sky Sports News HQ’s Craig Slater understands that one of the key factors in attracting the new investment was confirmation that the team will receive their 2014 prize money – somewhere in excess of £30m.
“My understanding is that John Booth and Graeme Lowdon will be running the team and they do plan to take part in the first race,” he added.
“The Formula 1 commission meet on Thursday and they should agree to allow Marussia, or Manor as we should call them, to use last year’s car in the 2015 world championship. I understand that this deal has finally been agreed because Marussia have been allowed to keep their prize money from the 2014 season, which has effectively halved their debts.”
Rumours immediately started circulating that the new investment could be coming from McLaren-Honda, with Manor effectively becoming a B team to develop engines and young drivers such as Kevin Magnussen and Stoffel Vandoorne. However, the Woking squad have told Sky Sports F1 those reports are false.
“I’ve just asked McLaren and they say we are not involved with this,” said Ted Kravitz.
“If it is Honda it is not going to work with the 2014 car because of the way the engine mountings are. They could use Ferrari for a year and then move to Honda, but Honda have their own problems to sort out, they are not in the business at the moment of getting another team on board. And we’ve had that denial from McLaren that they are involved.”
Marussia finished ninth in the constructors’ championship last year after scoring their first ever points at the Monaco Grand Prix.