Brawn: Merc team even stronger
WAITING FOR THE HAMMER? Mercedes F1 team chief Ross Brawn before the "tyre test" hearing in Paris on June 20, 2013. The team was found technically guilty of contravening in-season car-test rules but let of with a lightly. Image: AFP
Author: ALAN BALDWIN
LONDON, England - Mercedes tried to put the "tyre-test" tribunal behind it on Friday with team boss Ross Brawn saying it had made the Formula 1 team stronger and left his own enthusiasm for the sport undimmed.
The team was reprimanded and ordered to miss a July 2013 three-day young-driver test after an independent tribunal decided it had broken the rules by taking part in the tyre test with Pirelli in Spain in May.
Other teams protested when they found out about the test but the tribunal ruled Mercedes had acted in good faith and not sought an unfair advantage.
Brawn told Sky Sports TV after the verdict: "I think these events are the ones that pull the team together, the sort of events - as well as racing - that consolidate a team.
"The team was very solid in the last few weeks; we had complete support from (Mercedes headquarters in) Stuttgart. They understood... it was very important for Mercedes that the facts of this case were understood."
The Briton, asked whether he had feared a different outcome might have hastened his exit from the team, acknowledged he had been under some pressure before the hearing in Paris.
"An event like this creates a lot of emotions. It would have been very frustrating if the outcome of this hadn't been what it was... but it does sometimes strengthen your resolve rather than weaken it.
"It's certainly cleared everything away now so we can focus on the rest of the year. The car is coming along well, we've got some interesting things to try at Silverstone, some improvements, and two drivers on top of their form.
"I think we can now move on to the rest of the season. Certainly it hasn't diminished my enthusiasm for F1."
'KEEN TO GO RACING'
The 2013 British GP at Silverstone, a short drive from Mercedes F1's Brackley factory, is scheduled for Sunday June 30 with drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg hungry for success.
Brawn said the drivers had been kept fully abreast of developments and had been concerned at what could have happened to the team.
"I think they are pleased we've got a balanced result, a balanced conclusion," he said. "They are just keen to go racing again."
Mercedes is lying third in the Constructors' championship after seven of 19 races.