HRT denies Ma is confirmed as 2013 race driver
6 November 2012 – HRT has told GPUpdate.net that Ma Qing Hua has not been confirmed as a race driver for the 2013 Formula 1 season, countering reports emerging in the Chinese press.
The reports state that Ma was announced in a Tuesday press conference, which would mean he makes history by becoming the first Chinese F1 driver. However, when asked to verify whether this was the case, the Madrid-based outfit denied any such signing.
"The press conference wasn't such thing, but a tribute paid by the Chinese authorities to Ma for what he's achieved this season (as reserve driver)," an HRT spokesperson told GPUpdate.net. "That was it.”
The spokesperson added that the topic of 2013 was not mentioned in Tuesday’s press conference. So far this season, Ma has taken part in three Friday practice sessions.
"Our team is a young one that looks to the future," David Mancebo, Business Director for HRT, said at the gathering. "Without a doubt, we would like to continue counting on Ma Qing Hua for the future as we have done this year."