Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn has praised Nico Rosberg
in the wake of the German's victory at the British Grand Prix
and he believes the squad has now taken another 'big step in the right direction'.
Rosberg survived the tyre mayhem - and a visit to the stewards' office post-race for ignoring yellow flags - to take the win, his second of the season following his success around the streets of Monte Carlo back in May.
Speaking at the finish, Brawn was quick to salute the 28-year-old who came under pressure at the end from a hard-charging Mark Webber.
“It is a very special feeling to win here at Silverstone and especially at the end of such a dramatic afternoon. Nico didn't put a foot wrong today: he drove extremely well, looked after the tyres like he needed to and was in the perfect place to pick up the pieces when others ran into trouble,” Brawn said.
“It got very tense in the final laps after the second Safety Car period, but Nico showed he had the speed to respond and the composure to bring the car home. It's his second victory in three races and really deserved.”
Brawn also went on to pay homage to his other driver, Lewis Hamilton, who saw his victory hopes disappear when he suffered a tyre blow-out on lap 8. Nevertheless though, the Englishman still finished fourth.
“Lewis showed exactly what he's made of today,” Brawn continued. “He was driving beautifully at the front of the field and slowing pulling away when he suffered the tyre failure. Then he went from dead last on lap nine to fourth at the finish - and he was lapping incredibly quickly with a damaged car in the final laps. I am sure he will take a lot of encouragement for the rest of the season from the basic pace we showed today.”
Brawn's final words were for the entire team: “The biggest praise of all must go to our team,” he added. “We have worked night and day this year to improve this car, solve our tyre management issues and put ourselves in a position to take the fight to our rivals. Today, we took another big step in the right direction and perhaps we have turned a corner now. It's extra special to have done it here at Silverstone, in front of our colleagues, family and friends. Congratulations to the entire team.”
Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff meanwhile was similarly delighted with the team's performance.
“What a great day for our team! The guys in Brackley and Brixworth have worked so hard in the past weeks and months to deliver this kind of performance, always with the total support and commitment of our board in Stuttgart. Today, we began to deliver on the potential we have shown this year,” Wolff said. “Both cars were right on the pace all the way through the race and, while we had misfortune with Lewis, we also enjoyed good fortune with the final Safety Car period, which allowed Nico to change a damaged tyre without penalty. Nico drove beautifully and Lewis was full of fight and determination to come from the back of the grid to the edge of the podium.
“Most of all, this is a win for everybody who has worked so hard at our factories to pull us into contention at the front of the field. In a normal race, on a demanding circuit, we were right there in qualifying and all through the race, which is probably the best news from today.
"So thank you to Stuttgart, to Brixworth and to Brackley. Now we need to keep pushing because we still have a lot more to achieve this season.”