In a surprise move, Marussia have abandoned their contract with Timo Glock. Instead he now heads for the bright lights of DTM? Ok, so maybe it’s not such a glamorous move and it will certainly see a reduction in his multi million euro pay packet, but it’s not a stupid one either.
DTM has been home to numerous former F1 drivers, Ralf Schumacher and David Coulthard amongst others. What’s more Glock’s 2007 tests for BMW make him an obvious choice for their DTM team. Indeed Glock himself alluded to this by saying: “I’ve experienced 3 great years with Marussia. We part in friendship. I want new challenges and to continue my journey in motorsport.” You can’t say fairer than that!
For years I’ve been hearing fans talk about how he’s wasted at a team like Marussia. I do partly agree; he may not be a championship winning driver but he has joined an exclusive club: he scored points in his first ever Grand Prix. Remember that was on the old points system and not the current one.
Another possibility for the end of his time with the team is his pay packet. Thought to be worth around 3 million euros, a small team like Marussia cannot continually afford such high wages – especially since they’ve lost 10th place in the Championship to Caterham for a fourth consecutive year.
So maybe a pay driver is the best alternative? We all know of Formula’s tough, elitist nature; without millions behind a driver it is unlikely that their welcome in Formula 1 will be extensive.
Kamui Kobayashi is a possibility though he did announce last year that his hunt for a 2013 seat was all but over. With £1 million fan backing he would certainly be a fan favourite and would bring a combination of youth,aggression and some experience. That is a requirement with rookie Max Chilton seemingly stranded on his own just weeks from pre season testing.
It is for this reason I must rule out Luiz Razia. Undeniably talented and certainly a ‘one to watch’ but not yet ready for the move given the circumstances. Perhaps a few more years Luiz?
As for Jaime Alguersuari? This one is slightly more difficult to predict. He did turn down the opportunity to drive for HRT in 2011 – a wise decision on his part. He may decide that this may not be enough for a driver who was once set for a Red Bull drive in years to come. He does bring money and experience though he may not bring enough; I don’t even think his advanced knowledge of the Pirelli tyres will be enough .
Bruno Senna is also a possibility but he is unlikely to take this chance. His early years at HRT forced him to the back of the grid; his time at Renault and Williams will have proven to him that top teams can, and sometimes will, hire him. No racer will want to be at the back; it’s not in their competitive nature.
That is one thing I have noticed about Timo Glock. His 12th place in Singapore was brilliant and almost brought Marussia closer to elusive 10th place but aside from that he’s seemed much more reserved than usual; perhaps that fighting spirit dwindled during his time at the back of the grid? The signing of a multi-year deal back in 2011 was perhaps not his smartest move; it looked as if he was going stale at the back of the grid. This fresh start could prove to be a great opportunity for the German.
For me Vitaly Petrov could be a good alternative. He brings considerable sponsorship from Russia – let’s not forget that Marussia is partly owned by a Russian company. If a Russian GP was to be on the cards then a strong Russian contingent would also be required.
Ultimately we may never know if Timo Glock left of his own accord or was forced out by a team who are struggling financially. All I do know is that there will most likely be more British drivers than German drivers (with a ratio of 4:3).
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