Ron Dennis has denied that McLaren want Heikki Kovalainen to drive in support of Lewis Hamilton's world championship challenge this season.
The McLaren boss was responding to comments made this weekend by Sir Jackie Stewart when the three-time world champion suggested that Hamilton should be supported by Kovalainen.
But Dennis says Hamilton doesn't need, and wouldn't want, special assistance from his teammate.
"I have enormous respect for Sir Jackie, he was one of grand prix racing's truly great world champions. Equally, we're always willing to accept constructive criticism and the affection felt in Britain for Lewis means lots of people are anxious to give well-intentioned advice," said Dennis.
"But the fact is that Sir Jackie retired from motor racing in 1973, which is 35 years ago, and the sport has moved on in that time. His suggestion that Lewis's world championship campaign depends on Heikki's assistance presupposes that Heikki's task is to drive in support of Lewis, and that simply isn't the case.
"The truth is that Lewis doesn't need any extra help. He and Heikki are good mates but they're both highly competitive individuals and they take their own decisions."
Dennis also reiterated his stance that McLaren will continue give both drivers in the team equal status.
"We have a long history of giving our drivers equal treatment and opportunity, and that isn't about to change," he added. "Not every armchair critic will agree with that policy but it's the way we go motor racing. And, to be frank, it's the way everyone goes motor racing these days."