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The 2012 Marussia MR01 was a car entered by Manor Motorsport and driven by the experienced Timo Glock and newcomer Charles Pic. The car helped the team move ahead of HRT and challenge Caterham for 10th-place in the Constructors’ Championship, eventually losing out in the final race. This was the first car designed by the new in-house team at the team’s Banbury Technical Centre after previous seasons development focusing on Computational Fluid Dynamics. The car proved to be very reliable, and this was key to helping the Team take the fight to the Caterham-Renault team.

Powered by customer Cosworth V8 engines the Marussia F1 Team also decided to run without KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery System) instead channeling all its resources into aerodynamic developments in a strategy which the team felt would yield the greater gains. This led some pundits to believe the Marussia F1 Team, which was fairly close in pace, had the better chassis than both Caterham and HRT. The MR01 finished in 12th-place in both Singapore and Brazil, and between both drivers only failed to finish six races. The team finished in 11th-place in the Constructors’ Championship.

The Marussia-Cosworth MR01 has less downforce than many of the top teams. Fast reactions are needed, and for many, finding the limit of the car may be an enormous challenge. Drivers will also need to take care of the brakes as with all Formula One cars the MR01’s brake performance trails off over a full race distance at some circuits. An adapted driving style and engine braking will help, but it’s important to note that maximum braking can only be applied from braking zones over 300km/h the brake must then be eased off as the aerodynamic load decreases. It also may not be possible to use 100% braking pressure at all circuits, so reducing brake pressure in the setup is also an option.

Tire management is also critical over a long race. You will need to minimize how much you spin the tires to reduce thermal degradation, and if you do pass a critical level it may be difficult or impossible to bring the tires back to the desired level for best performance. Watch those temperatures closely and then back off to bring them under control, you will lose less time over an entire run.

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