McLaren yet to decide on Brazil line-up
|By Jonathan Noble
||Saturday, October 7th 2006, 10:12 GMT
McLaren will make a decision whether or not to hand Lewis Hamilton his Grand Prix debut in Brazil only after the Briton's test at Jerez in Spain next week.
Even though the team insist that there are not many advantages to moving Hamilton up to their race team this season, boss Ron Dennis has said that they will wait to view the GP2 champion's performance at Jerez before choosing who will drive alongside Kimi Raikkonen at Interlagos.
"Lewis will test this week, he will participate in that test, but whether anything comes out of it to change our current thinking for the Brazilian Grand Prix, time will tell," said Dennis.
"We are not going into that test as being an evaluation of his capabilities as a driver. That is not the objective.
"It is to give him more mileage on a different type of circuit and to learn things that are important for us, as regards the Brazilian event. So no decision has been taken but as and when we will announce it."
Although McLaren are clearly going to evaluate how prepared Hamilton is for a race debut in Jerez, Dennis has suggested that there are plenty of reasons not to rush the youngster into the sport.
"These are things you need to be there, they need to be second nature to an individual. If we go down the path that will see us using Lewis, why not properly prepare him for that? Why throw anybody in at the deep end?
"There is always going to be expectation, but this is a hero to zero sport and why put anything at risk? The guy has had a brilliant career so far. He is a complete rounded individual who has got all sorts of pressures that will come to bear on him.
"I would much rather see him as equipped as he could be if he is given the chance of racing for McLaren in the future. I can't see throwing him in the deep end is a particularly smart thing to do."