Friday, January 25, 2013


There have been a flurry of activities at Mercedes lately, an attempt to prop up the team as they have had a pretty bad 3 years since coming back as The Silver Arrows. One win and a couple of podiums is nothing to shout about with Ross Brawn at the top and Nico Rosberg and Michael Schumacher as drivers.

Norbert Haug has been thrown out as Mercedes sets about to fix its problems. Next they have brought in 3 time F1 world champion Niki Lauda as non-executive chairman. He has organised the signing of Lewis Hamilton from McLaren to replace Schumacher. Then they convinced Toto Wolff to move from Williams taking an executive director role at Mercedes.

To top it all off, now the rumours is that they are trying to get McLaren's technical director Paddy Lowe over as well. Quite a bit of high ranking people assembled there, even Avengers like. A lot of people have a lot of different opinions about this, I'm still confused as I'm not really sure of Mercedes' plans. Who does right? But it does seem that Mercedes is "hungry" for success, as Lewis Hamilton puts it.

What do I think? I think Mercedes are making a big push for 2014. 2013 might be a bit too early to call it but as with most things in F1, it will take time and good positioning, like a good overtaking maneuver.  They're lining up for glory in 2014. Strong team, strong drivers, strong engine and hopefully good aerodynamics will definitely put them in a good position for 2014. Which is why Lewis Hamilton moved there in the first place.

There is some good points that Sky pitlane reporter Ted Kravitz has pointed out. Ted is of course in the know as he is "embedded" in the pits. So he might be able to shed some light into the Mercedes story.
"The last few weeks have seen some intense activity at the top of Mercedes GP team. And we're only now starting to understand what's been going on. I think the first point to be clear on is that Niki Lauda is in charge. He clearly doesn't understand the non-executive part of his title, which is meant to be non-executive chairman because he's been acting very much as an executive chairman. Ever since he joined the team, I understand that Lauda has even made it clear to Ross Brawn that Brawn reports to him and that he then reports to the Mercedes board. So there's clearly a big change going on at the management of the team."
"I don't think it's out of the question that Brawn could leave and I don't think it would have been his choice for it to end up that way. And what Lewis Hamilton would think of it, heaven only knows..."
Brawn leaving is not good news for Lewis Hamilton indeed. Sure he has had not much success lately but he did a really nice swing in 2009 with Brawn GP and he could do it again in 2014. Mercedes have to really sit on that.

As for Lewis..
"Last year's foray down the double DRS route, while it helped them early on in the season, ultimately was a dead end. All Lewis needs is a well-designed car. He already knows the Mercedes engine is strong and his own abilities are not under question. So that only leaves the car. Surely all Mercedes attention should be on getting the aerodynamics and mechanics right rather than messing around tweaking their management structure. Hamilton will support the team whatever they do but privately he'll be saying, 'Just give me a good car and I'll do the rest'."
Interesting times we live in. I guess we'll have to grit our teeth in the next few months to really see what the picture will look like. In the meantime, looking forward to the first test. For the complete article by Ted Kravitz, click here.

Also, check out my t-shirt designs for Formula 1 fanatics, click on image.

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