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Hamilton reassured by Brawn pledge to stay

24 January 2013

Lewis Hamilton has brushed aside concerns that Ross Brawn might be headed out of the Mercedes F1 team as a result of Toto Wolff joining Mercedes as the new head of management, with Wolff reportedly targeting McLaren's Paddy Lowe as a possible successor to Brawn as team principal.

"He's reassured me that he's here to stay and he's here to work as hard as he can with me and the rest of the team to win," Hamilton said after having a private conversation with Brawn at the Mercedes HQ at Brackley. "That gives me as much confidence as I need."

Hamilton admitted that Brawn's presence leading the team was a big factor in his decision to leave McLaren at the end of 2012 and join Mercedes for 2013.

"Of course when I was making the decision, he was definitely on the pros and cons list," said the 28-year-old former world champion. "He's had a great career, he's got great success and he's a great part of the team. We need that figurehead in the team to help steer us the way, so we definitely all look to him."

Hamilton also said that while he'd got along well with Lowe and shared "great experiences" with him at McLaren, he wasn't expecting the technical director to be joining him at Mercedes any time soon.

"He's at McLaren, as far as I'm aware, and that's how it is and how it will stay," Hamilton told Sky Sports News on Thursday. "I know they've got great people here and it's down to me and for the rest of the guys here to utilise them, and get more out of them.

Hamilton said despite the media speculation and uncertainty surrounding the team management that's broken out in the last few days, he is already feeling very much at home in his new team.

"Mercedes have been a part of my life for a long time," he pointed out. "People don't realise that it was the McLaren-Mercedes programme that I was brought into what I was 13, and Mercedes were very much part of my career all the way up until now.

"Obviously now I'm a fully-fledged member of Mercedes-Benz and been welcomed in by Dr Z [Daimler chairman Dieter Zetsche] and all the board members," he added. "This company and the team have got great heritage and I'm proud to be a part of that. I hope that I can help build towards the future and its history moving forwards."

Hamilton is aware that at Mercedes he will be following in the footsteps of one of the sport's all time icons - Juan Manuel Fangio.

"He's obviously a great legend that no one is ever really going to be able to eclipse," said Hamilton. "Obviously I'll work as hard as I can. We've got a small [trophy] cabinet here which I want to work towards.

"That's the target," he added. "To make this whole place full of trophies."


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