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Hamilton a "mercenary" when joining Mercedes

Hamilton a "mercenary" when joining Mercedes

F1 News

Hamilton a "mercenary" when joining Mercedes

Hamilton a "mercenary" when joining Mercedes

Mercedes chief strategist James Vowles has described Lewis Hamilton as being a "mercenary" when signing for the Silver Arrows in 2013.

Hamilton left McLaren at the end of the 2012 season with 21 race wins and one world title to his name.

Since moving to Mercedes, Hamilton has rewritten the record books, taking his win total to 96, equalling Michael Schumacher with seven world titles whilst also topping the podium and pole position statistics.

Asked if Hamilton was able to fit into the 'Mercedes' culture immediately upon his arrival, Vowles told the 'Beyond the Grid' podcast: "I'll speak on my behalf only because I can't talk on behalf of others, but he's a very different character to the character who joined us.

"When he joined us he was a mercenary. He was here to win races.

"That desire to win hasn't disappeared but what he has realised is you do it with the team and as a part of a team and you become the greatest sportsman that exists as a result of it.

"One individual can't do it by himself."

Crediting "the best team principal that you could imagine," Toto Wolff, for the creation of a "no-blame" culture, Vowles reflected each of the four permanent race drivers to have featured for Mercedes since its 2010 return has brought something different to the team.

He added: "In terms of Lewis and what he brings to the party - they are all different. Every single driver and what they have brought [to the team] is different.

"Michael [Schumacher] brought his strengths to it and Nico [Rosberg] brought his strengths into it. Valtteri [Bottas] brings strengths to it in a different way as well and Lewis brings his own set of strengths but I don't think it's one individual.

"I think it's how they form together and the culture we've created here that is why we are who we are today and why we work together.

"What I mean by that is one individual isn't strong enough to completely change the dynamics of thousands of people that are building this car."

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