Mercedes impressed by Lewis Hamilton after Jerez F1 test
|By Jonathan Noble||Monday, February 11th 2013, 10:23 GMT|
Lewis Hamilton has already proven to Mercedes that he has the off-track skills and attitude to match his obvious speed, says team boss Ross Brawn.
At the end of his first week of track action with Mercedes during testing at Jerez in Spain, Brawn said that Hamilton had impressed not only with his performance in the car but in how he was approaching the task of moving Mercedes forward.
"He is clearly a very talented driver," said Brawn. "But F1 is about so much more. There are a lot of highly talented drivers who do not have the rest of it.
"I think he has the rest of it as well."
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Brawn said that Hamilton's attitude to working with Mercedes had been a big help, especially the way he was dealing methodically with the situation, and leaving no stone unturned.
"He is very straightforward I have to say," explained Brawn. "In many ways he is very simple, very straightforward. He tells us what he thinks.
"He is never short of detail in telling you what he thinks and, of course, you learn at what level you need to go to. He is interested in everything about the car. He is interested in the fact that the stickers might not be put properly on the bodywork.
"He has a very good eye for detail, so I think he will be a very involved member of the team, which is what we wanted."
Brawn did think, however, that it would take some time for Hamilton and the engineering team to become as integrated as they will need to be to ensure car development is always in the right direction.
"I think it is still very early in terms of understanding what he wants from a car perspective. We need a greater spread before we get to understand that bit, but he is clearly a person who enjoys being involved at all levels.
"That is a great motivation for the team. He has been working hard with the engineers at this test. He has been here on the days that Nico [Rosberg] has been driving, listening on the headset to what has been going on. So, he is everything I hoped he would be."
Brawn also revealed that he had made it clear to Hamilton that it was vital the former world champion spoke his mind to ensure that he could help the team improve.
"We have made it very clear to Lewis that he is part of the solution," he said. "You have a choice in the team - you are either a problem or you are a solution.
"He is part of the solution to get us where we want to be.
"He knows that and he understands it and I think he is relishing it. It is correct that he gives us his reference points and helps us understand what he must focus on.
"Some of them we knew already and that is why we restructured the aero group, so I welcome that approach.
"It needs to be constructive and it needs to be positive, but criticism of the right sort is always helpful as it drives you forward."