Justin King on Wednesday played down suggestions his new role at Manor is a stepping stone to F1's top job.
Already last year, the former Sainsbury's chief was named as a potential successor to Bernie Ecclestone.
Now, he has surfaced at the reborn Manor Marussia, not having bought into the team but serving as an advisor to investor Stephen Fitzpatrick and interim chairman.
But King said at Manor's launch event in London on Wednesday that he will eventually step down from the role.
And he denied it could be a prelude to launching a bid to succeed Ecclestone as F1 chief executive.
"I have always been clear," said King, "I have never applied for a job where there isn't a vacancy -- and there isn't a vacancy.
"I understand why people made a connection, but that is because of my son," he added, referring to his 21-year-old son Jordan, who is stepping up to GP2 in 2015.