Formula One: Marussia's request to run old car rejected

A Marussia F1 car is unloaded and wheeled into the Singapore Grand Prix Pit Building ahead of the SingTel Singapore Grand Prix 2012. Marussia's attempts to compete in this year's Formula One world championship have suffered a major setback after
A Marussia F1 car is unloaded and wheeled into the Singapore Grand Prix Pit Building ahead of the SingTel Singapore Grand Prix 2012. Marussia's attempts to compete in this year's Formula One world championship have suffered a major setback after their request to use last year's car in 2015 was rejected. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

LONDON (AFP) - Marussia's attempts to compete in this year's Formula One world championship have suffered a major setback after their request to use last year's car in 2015 was rejected.

The cash-strapped British-based team went into administration and missed the closing three grands prix of 2014 in the United States, Brazil and Abu Dhabi.

Marussia are still hoping to come out of administration this month but the decision not to allow them to use last season's car has closed the door on them lining up for the season-opening race in Melbourne on March 15.

Their request was turned down by the Formula One Strategy Group meeting in Paris on Thursday.

"They wanted to come in with last year's car and it didn't get accepted," F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone told Britain's Independent newspaper on Friday.

He added: "It needed all the teams to agree and there were three or four of them that didn't agree."

The decision was taken the same day as fellow F1 backmarker Caterham's assets were put up for sale, meaning no return for them either in 2015 after they went into administration like Marussia in October.

Reports in Britain suggest Marussia are still hoping that new owners can be found to get them racing sometime during the year. Under F1 rules, a team is allowed to miss three races during a season, meaning they could still line up in Bahrain in April.