Timo Glock has confirmed he is to leave the Marussia team after three unproductive seasons with the Anglo-Russian squad.
The German, who had previously been a podium visitor for Toyota, announced he had had ‘…3 great years…we part in friendship.’
The move has taken many fans by surprise as Glock looked set to reprise his role as team leader for the UK-based Marussia for the fourth consecutive season. German sports paper Sportbild initially broke the news, and speculation has mounted that Glock has switched to the German DTM championship for 2013.
Team principal John Booth claimed ‘commercial’ interests as the reason for the split, fuelling rumours that Marussia are struggling for money in the sport that demands so much of its investors. The signing of Max Chilton in December is suspected to include a deal with Aon Risk Solutions, though this may not be enough for Marussia to secure their future. It is likely a driver with significant financial backing will take his place, making Bruno Senna and Narain Karthikeyan the favourites for the vacant seat.
‘We would like to thank Timo for working with us to reach this decision, especially as he had a valid contract, and also for the contribution he has made to our team.’ was the official line, making Glock’s move rather difficult to understand. With a valid contract in place, has he received a large pay-out or is he promised a seat at the team in better times to come? It’s hard to believe a driver of his ambition and ability would quietly turn his back on a race seat so meekly.
“I have had three excellent years with the Marussia F1 Team, during which I had the chance to actively participate in building and developing the team in its endeavours to succeed within the Formula 1 World Championship.” said Glock in a personal statement.
“I would like to wish the team good luck in navigating this next period and thank everyone for the great times we shared and the support I have received.”