This is the first fruits, argues Brawn
27 November 2013 – Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn has said he is optimistic the outfit will continue to progress next season.
Mercedes secured second in the Constructors’ Championship last weekend, seeing off Ferrari by six points. Brawn believes though, that this is just the ‘first fruits of the technical team’ that they began building two years ago.
“The key thing in Brazil is that the team secured second position in the Constructors' Championship, even though we made rather hard work of it,” Brawn stated. “That was done on the basis of a very good step forwards and one we made for good reasons.
“My thanks and congratulations to everyone at our team for all of their hard work, dedication and commitment. Red Bull have been extremely dominant in 2013, and congratulations to them. But our progress is the first fruits of the technical team we began building two years ago and I am optimistic that the trend of progress will continue in 2014.”
Looking back on the season finale, Brawn joked he has definitely got a few more grey hairs and while it is still not known whether or not he will stay on, it is clear if he does go it will be a loss to Mercedes.
“I've certainly got a few more grey hairs after that race! Both cars made fantastic starts but it was soon clear that we hadn't found the sweet spot with the car balance for Nico [Rosberg] and he was struggling for rear-end grip [although he still finished fifth],” Brawn continued.
“Lewis [Hamilton] was stronger in the opening stint and showed good pace before and after his first stop. Our race obviously turned on the two drive-through penalties for Felipe [Massa] and Lewis. Our drivers had been reporting that Felipe was consistently crossing the white line at pit entry with all four wheels and when the FIA eventually took action, that obviously helped us.
“Then we had Lewis' unfortunate incident with [Valtteri] Bottas and we have to take that one on the chin as we should have kept Lewis better informed of just how quickly the Williams was closing, even though he was a lap down.
“He then drove strongly after the penalty - especially considering his floor was damaged by the flailing tyre [and took ninth].”