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Manor eyes freight deadline, signs Will Stevens

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The former Marussia team on Wednesday said it is back on track for 2015.

Now called Manor, founded for the junior categories by John Booth 25 years ago, the outfit has exited administration, set up camp at the old F3 headquarters in South Yorkshire, and is working hard on preparing a car.

Earlier, Force India threw a spanner in the works by blocking an application to race 2014-spec machines this year, but Manor announced on Wednesday that a car for this season is in fact in an “advanced stage of build”.

In a statement, the team said personnel are “working 24-7 towards the air freight despatch date of 6 March” – next Friday – ahead of the season opener in Melbourne.

And now, Manor has its first race driver for 2015.

British rookie Will Stevens’ backers helped Caterham make its Abu Dhabi return last November against the odds, and the 23-year-old has now been signed up by Manor.

“It’s very exciting to see everything coming together at Manor after the tremendous effort that has gone into saving the team,” said Stevens, who late last year was also a reserve driver at Marussia.

“It would not have been possible without the incredible support we have received from all the suppliers and from within the sport, but most of all the fantastic team of people at Manor who are working around the clock to ensure we are ready for Melbourne,” he added.

“My thanks to the team for their confidence in me and I can’t wait to see all the hard work rewarded when we line up on the grid in two weeks’ time.” (GMM)

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