Rossi disappointed, but diplomatic, after Marussia no-go

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Alexander Rossi’s situation with Marussia this weekend, where he was scheduled to make his debut before a change back to Max Chilton, is an unfortunate one for the young American.

He still participated in practice one, but that was hardly the session or sessions he hoped to run. Chilton came back in the second session Friday afternoon.

Still Rossi took the high road, in a statement released this afternoon.

Here’s the full text of that statement:

Thank you for your support everyone! Overall I feel it has been a very positive couple of days. Obviously I am disappointed not to be racing this weekend. I’ve spent my whole life and career working towards competing and I’m ready to race in F1. However, today was a very positive step in my role with Marussia F1 Team. I’m now even more ready to step into a race seat when called upon.

My role as the Marussia F1 Team Official Reserve Driver means that I will be asked to step up and also step down at times. I’m confident in myself, my abilities and the responsibility to be fully prepared to do what the team needs from me.

Driving the MR03 in this morning’s Free Practice session was extremely positive, despite the small technical challenges which affected the overall pace. It was great to get a session in the car and I’m looking forward to getting back behind the wheel again very soon!

Rebellion confirms LMP1 return, all-star line-up for WEC super season

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Rebellion Racing has confirmed it will return to the LMP1 class of the FIA World Endurance Championship for the 2018/19 ‘super season’ with an all-star line-up featuring Le Mans winners Neel Jani and Andre Lotterer.

Rebellion raced in LMP1 as a privateer between 2009 and 2016 before stepping down to LMP2 for the most recent season, capturing the class titles at the first attempt.

Following a push from the WEC and Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) to make LMP1 more appealing to privateer teams, Rebellion announced on Wednesday it would return to the premier class for the 2018/19 season with a two-car effort.

WEC LMP2 champion Bruno Senna will return with Rebellion next year, as will Mathias Beche, with the pair set to be joined by four new faces.

The most notable arrivals are Porsche factory drivers Lotterer and Jani, both of whom were left without an LMP1 drive following the closure of the German manufacturer’s program at the end of the season.

American racer Gustavo Menezes will also join Rebellion, stepping up after two years in LMP2, while outstanding 2017 rookie Thomas Laurent completes the Swiss team’s line-up.

“I am looking forward to coming back where my endurance career started nine years ago,” said Jani.

“Rebellion Racing played a huge role in my career and also helped me become a factory driver for Porsche. When Porsche stopped in LMP1, it was clear for me that I wanted to race again for Rebellion.

“With the new regulations, I hope we can reach the overall podium at Le Mans and with a bit of luck, maybe we can even grab some wins during the super season of WEC.”

“I am very happy to join the champion Rebellion team,” added three-time Le Mans winner Lotterer.

“The LMP1 project is very exciting and to be able to go on with the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the FIA WEC challenge is something I did not want to miss.

“I am motivated and looking forward to have a great time with great people there.”