In November 2010, it was announced that Marussia, a Russian sports car manufacturer founded in 2007, had taken a controlling stake in Virgin Racing and that in 2011 it would compete - under a Russian racing licence - as Marussia Virgin Racing.
In November 2011, the F1 Commission officially accepted the team's request to change it name to Marussia F1 Team in 2012.
Having established a technical collaboration with McLaren, and recruited former Renault stalwart Pat Symonds to put together a design team, not to mention the move to a new factory in Banbury - closer to the F1 Triangle - much more was expected of the team in 2012, especially in light of its previous dismal performances.
With a 60% model of its 2012 car in the McLaren wind tunnel by the end of September 2011, the first parts were being received at the factory in early December. Surprisingly, the team opted to continue with one strand of Nick Wirth's philosophy - it opted not to use KERS in 2012 - John Booth insisting that the money could be better spent elsewhere.
While Jerome d'Ambrosio gave a good account of himself in 2011, the team opted to drop him in favour of GP2 graduate Charles Pic, who spent two days testing with the team at the Young Driver Test in Abu Dhabi. Timo Glock, who had a contract until 2014, would continue to lead the team.
Looking ahead to the new season, Pitpass' Mat Coch summed up the huge improvement needed... and why.
"Virgin is officially the worst team in Formula One," he wrote. "It has been these last two seasons and that simply has to change. Investors are not interested in doing business with an entity which is not successful. Success breeds success, and while Jim Wright, Marketing Director at Virgin, tells us that the team's finances are built through business-to-business relationships rather than traditional investment, Formula One is an especially fickle business and if you're not winning you're losing. The maths is comparatively simple in that respect."
Well, on paper, Marussia appears to have had a pretty good season, however, had the season been just a few laps less it could have been even better.
Yes, the Russian team finally overhauled HRT, leapfrogging the Spanish team to finish eleventh in the standings however, until the final laps of the Brazilian Grand Prix it appeared to have jumped Caterham also, thereby taking tenth in the standing, and thereby entitled to a share of the official prize pot, thought to be worth in excess of £15m.
Having failed the mandatory crash test, the Russian team was forced to use its 2011 car in pre-season testing, the 2012 (MR01) not appearing until March 5 - eleven days before the start of the Australian Grand Prix weekend - when it was unveiled at Silverstone.
The penultimate car to be launched - HRT was last - originally it was to be the only car on the grid that would not use KERS until the Spanish outfit opted to follow suit.
The start of the season didn't augur well, Clock and Pic managing to out-pace the HRTs but still way short of the Caterhams. On the other hand, reliability was good, though in Bahrain Pic began a run of three races in which he failed to finish courtesy of a string of failures (hydraulics, driveshaft and electrics).
While there was disappointment when Glock was forced to pull out of the European Grand Prix due to a stomach bug worse was to come weeks later when test driver Maria de Villota was seriously injured in a bizarre accident during straightline testing at Duxford Airfield.
The Spanish driver crashed heavily into the lift gate of the team transporter, sustaining serious injuries. In the days that followed it was revealed that she had lost her right eye.
Having dropped Nick Wirth's controversial all-CFD approach, the conventional windtunnel work appeared to be paying off.
At Spa, the team's fiftieth Grand Prix, Pic was fastest in FP2 with teammate Glock sixth, though it should be pointed out that only ten drivers actually set a time in the heavy rain. However, In Singapore, Glock was to produce the team's best ever race result, finishing twelfth and thereby leapfrogging Caterham to take tenth in the Constructors' Championship.
To the Banbury-based outfit it was like winning the championship, however, the joy was short-lived, Vitaly Petrov's eleventh in Brazil allowing the Anglo-Malaysian team to retake the position and the (much needed) prize money.
Ironically, on the Friday of the Brazil weekend, Pic revealed that he was heading to Caterham, therefore with Glock under contract until the end of 2014 attention shifted to who might partner him.
A few weeks later it was announced that Max Chilton, who had driven the car in FP1 in Abu Dhabi, would partner Glock in 2013. Sorted!
Even before Brazil however, in early November, Pitpass reported that the team was in active discussion with potential new investors in the business and was also pursuing other sources of income including potential sponsorship and drivers.
All went quiet until January 20, a cold miserable Sunday, when two reports coming out of Germany caught the sport (and media) off guard. The first related to Toto Wolff leaving Williams for Mercedes, while the other had Timo Glock being dumped by Marussia.
Next day, the Russian team confirmed the news, claiming that the decision was by mutual agreement. Summing up the situation, John Booth said: "The ongoing challenges facing the industry mean that we have had to take steps to secure our long-term future. Tough economic conditions prevail and the commercial landscape is difficult for everyone, Formula 1 teams included."
While Glock soon found employment in the form of a DTM seat with BMW, many were shocked by the news and as the debate raged the popular German took to twitter, confirming that "this has nothing to do with sport".
Therefore, bearing in mind Pitpass' revelation in November, coupled with Glock's dumping and Booth's admission, things did not look good for the Russian team, a situation emphasised by the collapse of HRT.
Days before the first of the 2013 launches, a number of (pay) drivers were under consideration for the second seat, while the team had yet to announce its launch date. The team subsequently announced Brazilian Luiz Razia as Chilton's teammate however, when the youngster was unable to produce the first instalment of his 'rental fee' he was dropped and hours after Jules Bianchi learned he had lost the Force India drive the Frenchman was signed by Marussia.
It was believed the Bianchi deal may well have been underwritten by Ferrari, not only in terms of getting the youngster into a seat but also with an eye on the new formula for 2014 when Marussia would need a new engine supplier to replace Cosworth.
Marussia spent 2013, much like previous seasons, locked in its own little world championship with Caterham, occasionally snapping at the heels of those losing ground to the midfield but more often than not squabbling over the scraps that nobody else wanted.
On a positive note, Marussia though totally lacking in pace, showed superb reliability, while Chilton was one of only three drivers to finish every race, the only driver to do so in his rookie season in the entire history of the sport.
The MR02's extraordinary reliability paid dividends when Bianchi finished 13th in Malaysia, the second race of the season, for this was enough to give the Russian team the edge over Caterham in terms of the Constructors' Championship at season end and the substantial FOM prize money that came with it.
Bianchi usually had the edge in qualifying, but in all honesty the equipment at their disposal meant that neither driver was ever really able to show what he was truly capable of.
Bianchi, having qualified 19th for the Australian Grand Prix, overtook Pastor Maldonado and Daniel Ricciardo on the first lap, eventually finished 15th on his F1 debut, while teammate Chilton scored his best finish in Monaco (14th) though he was aided by a proportionately high number of retirements.
In Belgium, Bianchi qualified 15th, his best performance of the year, while Chilton was one place behind on the grid having been one of three drivers to go out on slick tyres at the end of Q1 when the track's condition was improving.
With the team opting to retain both drivers for 2014, as widely predicted, it is to use Ferrari powerplants.
Fears for the team's future, the result of the official entry list featuring an asterisk against its name, indicating that the entry was "subject to confirmation", were dismissed by team boss Graeme Lowdon who insisted it was the result of "administrative details" yet to be finalised with the FIA.
Monocoque: Carbon-fibre composite
Front suspension: Carbon-fibre wishbone and pushrod suspension elements operating inboard torsion bar and damper system
Rear Suspension: Carbon-fibre wishbone and pullrod suspension elements operating inboard torsion bar and damper system
Electronics: MAT SECU TAG 320/Scuderia Ferrari
Tyres: Pirelli P Zero
Lubricants & Fluids: Shell
Brake system: Carbon/carbon discs and pads with rear brake by wire system
Brake calipers: AP Racing
Master cylinders: AP Racing
Steering: Marussia F1 Team-designed hydraulic PAS
Instruments: Marussia F1 Team-designed steering wheel incorporating MAT PCU8 display
Fuel system: ATL Kevlar-reinforced rubber bladder
Cooling system: Marussia F1 Team
Extinguisher system: FEV FIA approved system
Seat belts: Sabelt
Overall width: 1800mm
Engine: Ferrari 059/3
Maximum revs: 15,000
Turbo charging: Single turbo
Fuel flow: 100kg/hr maximum
Fuel capacity: 100kg
Configuration: V6 90°
Valves: 4 per cylinder
Injection: 500 bar - direct
Units per driver: 5
Battery energy (per lap): 4 Mj
MGU-K power: 120 kW
MGU-K max revs: 50,000 rpm
MGU-H max revs: 125,000 rpm
Ferrari longitudinal gearbox
Servo controlled hydraulic limited-slip differential
Semi-automatic sequential and electronically controlled gearbox with quick shift
8 gears + reverse