Marussia have promised that they will keep pushing hard until the end of the season as they “owe it” to Jules Bianchi to finish ninth.
The Frenchman remains in a critical but stable condition in hospital after he suffered severe head trauma during an accident at Suzuka on October 5.
Bianchi, though, has been crucial to Marussia’s excellent season this year as he helped the team to secure their maiden points in Formula 1 when he finished ninth in Monaco.
The team opted to run only one car at the inaugural Russian Grand Prix out of respect to the 25-year-old and sporting director Graeme Lowdon says they now need to push through to stay ninth.
“I really hope that the gesture [in Russia] has helped both Jules and the family,” he is quoted as saying by Autosport.
“That is what it was designed for and that was the intention.
“We’ve done the best thing we can do for now, and going forward the best thing for Jules and the family is to try to protect our position in the Championship.
“Jules has been instrumental in that – because it was a great drive in Monaco – and it got us something really valuable in sporting terms. So we owe it to him now to defend that.
“There are three races left and double points in Abu Dhabi, which puts extra pressure on, so have to keep pushing until the end of the season.”
Alexander Rossi was added to the FIA entry list in the wake of Bianchi’s accident, but the team of course decided not to run a second car at Sochi.
The team is yet to decide about their line-up for the final few races and they will consult with Bianchi’s family.
“I can make no comment at the moment as far as the driver line-up is concerned,” he said.
“We haven’t had time to sit down properly and have a look at all the options.
“There is a little bit of a gap now, so we will use that time to work out what the best thing is.
“It is never straightforward, but we will do whatever is right.”