Manor’s Rio Haryanto has been replaced with Mercedes youngster Esteban Ocon for the remainder of the 2016 racing season.
Manor haver terminated Haryanto’s contract as he was ‘unable to meet contractual obligations’, as earlier in the year he was backed heavily by Indonesian sponsors, however has struggled to raise sufficient funds for the rest of the season.
Alexander Rossi, Stoffel Vandoorne and Jordan King were all linked with the seat, however it is Ocon that has secured his seat, and will join fellow Mercedes youngster Pascal Wehrlein starting from the next race, the Belgian Grand Prix.
The Indonesian’s best finish was 15th place at the Monaco Grand Prix, and despite being dropped, he has now been offered a reserve seat.
“Some time ago, his management indicated that they were experiencing difficulties honouring the obligations of that contract beyond the Hungarian Grand Prix,” Dave Ryan, Manor race director spoke.
“Rio’s team have worked tirelessly to try to resolve that situation with his Indonesian backers and we have supported those efforts as much as possible, including allowing Rio to race in Germany.
“Unfortunately we reached a point where, in the best interests of the team, we were forced to explore other options for the remainder of the season.”
Ocon, however, has already had his seat fitting, and his keen to begin racing full-time later this month.
“I’m ready for this exciting step up,” the Frenchman spoke.
“I’d like to thank Renault Sport F1 Team and Mercedes-Benz for working together to make this happen, and to Manor Racing for the opportunity, which I’m going to grab with both hands.
“They’ve done a great job this season and I’m excited that I’ve been tasked with helping them to build on that progress. I can’t wait to get started.”