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Thursday, April 5, 2012

Ma Qing Hua - Cynical (Not Me!)

Not to knock the guy but a couple of things strike me about the HRT announcement that Ma Quing Hua is joining their young driver development programme.

Firstly He's not particularly a young driver in F1 terms; born in 1987, he's now 24 years old and should really be at the peak of his driving powers.

The second thing: Has anyone heard that HRT even had a young driver's development programme before this announcement? You would have thought that they would have announced that they were starting a young driver development programme before announcing that a 24 year old Chinese driver is joining it.

Forgive my cynicism but an announcement like this coming just before the Chinese GP, where the HRT website says

"Ma Qing Hua will perform his first official act with HRT Formula 1 Team on Thursday the 12th of April at a press conference previous to the Chinese Grand Prix (13th to 15th of April), which takes place at the Shanghai International Circuit".

leads me to believe that a) they are going to sign a major Chinese sponsor to their car or b) that they intend to assault the Chinese market with HRT merchandise hoping to move a massive volume on the basis that this lad might be driving for them in the future.

I apologise if I'm wrong but backmarker history...