The Mercedes F1 team is still playing down suggestions that McLaren technical director Paddy Lowe is headed for Brackley, despite his current employer effectively placing him on 'gardening leave'.

According to ESPN, new Mercedes head of motorsport Toto Wolff has claimed that the team is still deciding where the Briton will slot into an already crowded technical structure.

"I think it's too early to say that he's coming," Wolff insisted in Melbourne, "It's not just that you hire someone and off you go, there are discussions ongoing. Paddy is obviously a good guy and it's about fitting somebody in the organisation. So it's not yet done."

With Ross Brawn currently holding down the team principal role, and other highly regarded technical figureheads such as Bob Bell, Aldo Costa and Geoff Willis all operating within the Mercedes structure, it is easy to recognise the headache that Wolff has incorporating Lowe for 2014.

"Obviously, that situation is not perfect," the Austrian admitted, "But we've discussed it and said that Ross is the team principal and running the racing team and this is how it's going to stay. We haven't even started the 2013 season, we feel right working together and we have a good spirit internally. Paddy Lowe coming or not is so far ahead it makes no sense to talk about it now."


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