It may be the summer break, but Rio Haryanto’s future remains a hot topic following the news that Manor want €7 million in order for the 23-year-old to continue racing with the team.
Haryanto, who is the first Indonesian driver to compete in F1, is midway through his rookie season after getting a drive thanks to funding from the Indonesian government and state-owned oil company Pertamina.
However, he was only funded until last month’s Hungarian Grand Prix and even though Haryanto did go on to compete at the German Grand Prix the following week, Manor have now reportedly sent a letter to the Indonesian government in an attempt to obtain the €7 million.
Should they fail to receive the money, it is likely that Manor will find a replacement for Haryanto, but Indonesia’s sports ministry spokesman Gatot Dewa Broto is hoping it doesn’t come to that.
“We understand Manor’s concern but we hope Rio will not be replaced by another driver just because of funding issues,” he told AFP.
When asked whether the government would be able to raise the money, Broto admitted: “We don’t really see that happening.”
Given Broto’s comments it appears unlikely that Haryanto will be on the grid when Formula 1 action returns with the Belgian Grand Prix on August 28.