Roberto Merhi still does not know how long his deal for a Formula 1 race seat with Manor will last despite sporting director Graeme Lowdon backing his current lineup.
The Spaniard signed a short-term deal with Manor for the “opening races” of the season to race alongside Will Stevens, who has a contract for the full year.
Lowdon said last week he saw no reason why Merhi would not remain with the team providing its financial situation remains the same. But in China, Merhi told AUTOSPORT that he does not have any firm guarantees over his future.
“I do not know how many races I will do,” he said. “At the moment, I’m just working race by race.”
Merhi is dovetailing his Manor F1 duties with driving for Pons Racing in the Formula Renault 3.5 series this season. Should a permanent deal with Manor come off, Merhi said his F1 commitments would come first.
“My target is to do a full season in Formula 1,” he said. “Formula 1 has the priority. What I need to do in Formula Renault 3.5 is lead the championship by a long way and then maybe I can win that and do Formula 1 as well.”
The series clash twice – when both race in Monaco in May, and with the change of FR3.5’s Silverstone date to the same weekend as F1’s Italian GP.