Rio Haryanto has admitted for the first time that he might not make it through the 2016 season. Although backed by the Indonesian government and highly popular in his native country, it is understood the rookie is only paid up at Manor until mid-season. But his manager Piers Hunnisett told us in February: "All is confirmed for a full season."
There are signs, however, that the full season for Haryanto is in fact not guaranteed. The Indonesian government has launched a novel text message fundraising campaign. And his teammate Pascal Wehrlein said recently: "I really hope that he can do the whole season to the end and doesn't have to stop after the first half."
When asked by F1's official website if his seat depends on the success of his fundraising, Haryanto said: "I have no answer for that right now. No question, I would like to stay and finish the season here," he added.
Haryanto is at least giving himself the best possible chance, casting off the pre-season impression that he would be destroyed by fellow rookie Wehrlein. "He is a future Mercedes driver," said Haryanto, "and when I am not far off his time - wow - that's always fantastic for me." (GMM)
Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing