Well, he also sat with the official Formula 1 site for an “exclusive” Q&A that went up on Monday. And that seems the best evidence that he doesn’t really know what Mercedes is up to — or why have a Q&A out there with all that’s a-happening?
Here are some excerpts:
Q: Ross, ‘too many cooks spoil the broth’. Has that saying taken on new meaning for you in 2013?
Ross Brawn: Ha, it can be a problem if everybody tries to do the same thing! (laughs) It is important to have clear areas of responsibility. I am responsible for the sporting side; running the team on an operational level. If we can maintain that then there will not be a problem.
Q: You’ve always dealt with a Mercedes representative, but now that representative (Toto Wolff) is also a shareholder. Does that change things?
RB: Good question. I have not thought about that yet. I don’t imagine so. I have been dealing with board members, so I don’t anticipate any differences, no.
Seems like there are a few things ol’ Ross hasn’t thought about.
Q: If 2013 doesn’t turn out to be your year, do you think 2014 could be? The last time there were significant rule changes – in 2009 – you won both titles with Brawn GP…
RB: 2014 is going to be a massive opportunity for the team that gets it right. Of course, we try to use these opportunities. I have a feeling that this time around everybody has recognized a) what an opportunity it is, and b) what a challenge it is going to be. At least this is what I hear from other teams who have parallel projects in place like we do – having a group working on the 2014 car as well as one working on the 2013 car. We are one team – we are an engine and a chassis designer and we can design and build those two major components together as one car.
Of course, which team that is…
Q: Lewis is completely new to you. What do you know about him from your own experience?
RB: What we all know is that he is an incredibly quick driver. He is very passionate about the sport and what he does. He has all the attributes you need to be a world champion – he’s proven that. We know all these things as you can see them from the outside. What you don’t get unless you work with somebody from the inside is the chemistry – the relationships they need to build – and we’ve started that journey. It’s something very positive at the moment and I hope it stays positive for a very long time.
Q: Of course, the most important issue for you at the moment is your new car – the F1 W04. Did the problematic first couple of days’ testing in Jerez nearly give you a heart attack?
RB: Of course the first couple of days were very disappointing. But what was encouraging in that situation was Lewis’s attitude and approach. He was very mature and he understands these complex engineering processes. We explained to him what had happened and he understood and dealt with it. For sure, it was not what we wanted to happen, but it was a useful experience for the team and Lewis and vice versa. So yes, Jerez was disappointing and you don’t want it to happen – not with a new driver in his first run in the new car.
Is anyone who is actually “very mature” ever described as “very mature?”
I think Force India would be crazy not to try to grab Ross.