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Manor, Virgin to launch next week.

Manor Grand Prix set to consummate relationship with Virgin with London launch on 15 December.
After much speculation, culminating in an unfortunate confirmation earlier this month, the relationship between nascent Manor Grand Prix operation and the Virgin Group will be made official next week.

Much has been made of the partnership, beginning with Virgin boss Richard Branson revealing that the Brawn team he backed in 2009 had priced itself out of a continuation in 2010, and hinting that he may be prepared to remain involved in F1, but with a smaller operation.

Rumours that that 'smaller operation' was Manor began almost as soon as John Booth's ambitious squad earned its place on the 2010 grid in this summer's F1 expansion, but were never confirmed by either side – even when the official 2010 entry list issued by F1 governing body the FIA listed the entry as Virgin Racing.

Now, however, the first real confirmation of an agreement between Booth and Branson has emerged with Manor inviting the media to the 'global media launch of the worst-kept secret in motorsport'.

The event will take place in London next Tuesday morning (15 December), with fuller details of the team and its programme due to be revealed. Timo Glock remains Virgin's only confirmed driver, the German having jumped ship from the sinking Toyota team and seemingly avoided similar uncertainty by opting to join former FRenault and F3 powerhouse Manor.

Glock's team-mate remains unclear at present, although GP2 stalwart Lucas di Grassi has emerged as a favourite to join the line-up. With Booth having referred to a past Macau winner as Glock's likely partner, only IndyCar convert – and recent Mercedes test inclusion – Mike Conway, and former BAR, Honda and Jordan favourite Takuma Sato appear possible alternative candidates, despite the likes of Heikki Kovalainen and Adam Carroll both having been listed among initial possibilities.



Related Pictures

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Manor Motorsport logo
Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing MRT05.
28.08.2016. Race
Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing MRT05.
28.08.2016.Race
The Manor Racing MRT05 of race retiree Pascal Wehrlein (GER) Manor Racing by the side of the circuit.
28.08.2016. Race
Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing MRT05.
28.08.2016. Race
Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing MRT05.
28.08.2016. Race
Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing MRT05.
28.08.2016. Race
Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing MRT05.
28.08.2016. Race
Pascal Wehrlein (GER) Manor Racing MRT05 and Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing MRT05 at the start of the race.
28.08.2016. Race
Pascal Wehrlein (GER) Manor Racing MRT05 leads team mate Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing MRT05 at the start of the race.
28.08.2016. Race
(L to R): Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1; Romain Grosjean (FRA) Haas F1 Team; Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren; Jolyon Palmer (GBR) Renault Sport F1 Team; and Pascal Wehrlein (GER) Manor Racing, as the grid observes the national anthem.
28.08.2016. Race
(L to R): Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1; Romain Grosjean (FRA) Haas F1 Team; Jolyon Palmer (GBR) Renault Sport F1 Team; and Pascal Wehrlein (GER) Manor Racing, as the grid observes the national anthem.
28.08.2016. Race
Pascal Wehrlein (GER) Manor Racing and team mate Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing on the drivers parade.
28.08.2016.
Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing.
28.08.2016.
27.08.2016 - Qualifying, Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing MRT05
27.08.2016 - Qualifying, Pascal Wehrlein (GER) Manor Racing MRT05
Pascal Wehrlein (GER) Manor Racing MRT05.
27.08.2016. Qualifying
27.08.2016 - Free Practice 3, Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing MRT05

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