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Marussia team boss John Booth says there was no alternative but to terminate Luiz Razia's race contract for the 2013 Formula 1 season, with the Brazilian driver running into financial troubles and failing to meet his final sponsorship payment deadline.
Having waited until the last possible moment on Friday afternoon, Booth's team was forced to drop Razia from its line-up and quickly chose to appoint Ferrari protege Jules Bianchi, who was beaten to the Force India vacancy by Adrian Sutil this week.
"We have found ourselves in a situation where we have had to terminate our contract with Luiz Razia," Booth said of his team's forced decision. "Having made clear the basis on which we must operate in 2013, and given the steps we had taken to put that new structure in place, we had no alternative but to remain true to the principles which we had identified as being key to securing our long-term future."
On the subject of Bianchi, Booth says he is delighted to welcome a 'highly regarded' driver into the team and is certain that the Frenchman will cope with the step up.
"Jules is a proven talent who is highly regarded within the paddock," Booth commented. "He has been on a clear trajectory towards Formula 1 and has achieved some impressive performances through the various feeder formulae, notably his 2012 season in Formula Renault 3.5 when he was also reserve driver for Force India.
"He is part of the Ferrari Driver Academy and his obvious pedigree put him on the radar for a number of teams over the winter as a driver ready to step up to Formula 1."
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