Paddy Lowe joins Mercedes on June 3rd as 'Executive Director (Technical)'
Team clarify new management set-up following Lowe's arrival
By Pete Gill
Last Updated: 20/05/13 4:26pm
Lowe stood down from his position of Technical Director at McLaren at the start of the year and has yet to be seen in a Formula 1 paddock this season.
However, Lowe's reappearance in Mercedes colours could take place as early as the Canadian GP on June 7-9 following the announcement that his long-awaited transfer from McLaren has been completed ahead of expected schedule.
"I am excited to become part of a highly talented and capable technical organisation," commented Lowe. "The team has already produced probably the fastest car of the 2013 season while the technical challenges of the new regulations for 2014 will give us the opportunity to maximise the synergies available to a works manufacturer. That is a challenge I am relishing.
"I have worked closely with Mercedes-Benz for almost 20 years and deeply admire the company's phenomenal commitment to Formula One. I look forward to much success together in the years ahead."
With the team already brimming with former Technical Directors, it remains to be seen precisely how Lowe will fit in at Mercedes although the Brackley outfit have moved to clarify the shape of the new set-up by stating that Lowe will 'work closely with Team Principal Ross Brawn' and that Brawn 'will retain overall responsibility for technical and sporting matters'.
Brawn himself, who seems to have quelled the perceived power struggle behind the scenes at Mercedes following the appointment of Niki Lauda as non-executive chairman and news of the pursuit of Lowe became public, has cited the "balancing act" required in the months ahead between focusing on different priorities as the driving force behind Lowe's recruitment.
"It is no secret that every team is facing a significant balancing act between this year and next. But it is perhaps less obvious that we will also see major changes for the 2015 and 2016 seasons, as development progresses with the new generation of car design and Power Unit," Brawn explained. "To deliver in these circumstances, a successful team needs strength in depth. Paddy's arrival will further strengthen our organisation and puts us in a strong position for the future."
Nevertheless, at the top of Lowe's in-tray upon his arrival at Brackley is likely to be finding a solution to the excessive rate of tyre wear the current Mercedes car, the W04, has generated since its birth and which has typically resulted in Lewis Hamilton, with whom Lowe previously worked at McLaren, and Nico Rosberg spiralling down the field on race day.
While Lowe's contention that the W04 is "probably the fastest car of the 2013 season" is endorsed by the fact a Mercedes driver has sat on pole position for three of the year's five races to date, the team's best result remains the pair of third-place finishes scored by Hamilton in Malaysia and China.
Who's who at Mercedes
Ross Brawn: Team Principal.
Niki Lauda: Non-executive chairman.
Toto Wolff: Executive Director (Business).
Paddy Lowe: Executive Director (Technical).