The Banbury-based outfit made decent progress with its Ferrari-powered MR03 in winter testing despite a difficult and delayed start in Jerez. The car may have completed just 317 laps over the 12 test days, but Booth is cautiously optimistic ahead of the first race in Australia.
“Although we did not meet our mileage target in pre-season testing, the positive work we did achieve, particularly last week in Bahrain, has been extremely valuable in terms of validating our calculations for the MR03 and finalising our specification for Melbourne,” he said.
“We are in good shape, both in terms of the car and as a maturing racing operation, and we head to Australia with cautious optimism. The opening round in particular, but also the season per se, is such an unknown quantity that it would be futile to try to predict an outcome, so our focus will be solely on getting the most out of our package on its racing debut.”
He added: “We have had some positive indications for reliability, but the acid test will be our first full race, which is the primary target for next Sunday. The first few races are the ones where opportunity is likely to knock, so we will also be looking to ensure we are prepared for every eventuality.
“We are fortunate to have two very talented and motivated drivers, and we know they will be helping us to push every step of the way. In a season so full of unknowns, perhaps the only real certainty for the opening round is that the Australian Grand Prix always delivers spectacular racing and this year we are likely to see that taken to another level.”
Image courtesy of Marussia F1 Team