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tune
So after much speculation it has been announced that Hamilton will move to Mercedes for 2013, with Sergio Perez taking his spot at McLaren.

Lewis joins Mercedes

Perez replaces Hamilton

I am a little surprised, as clearly Mercedes have struggled for performance in the last 3 seasons. Maybe the 2014 engine regs will shake things up again and I suppose Mercedes AMG F1 may get a head start over customer teams in terms of knowing what they're getting.

Is it money or not? It seems like that on the surface, as why leave the team with the best car at the moment. Still I am excited to see what comes of this being a Mercedes fan. I have spent the last couple of months slagging Hamilton off though!

It hasn't been officially announced, but I can only see that Schumacher will retire at the end of the season rather than continue with another team, that surely would be silly.

I'm pleased for Perez, as he has shown real potential and gets his chance to shine in a top team. It will be interesting to see the dynamic between him and Button.

People are saying that this frees up the driver market now, but personally I can't see a lot of team shifting and find it more likely new faces will arrive than a mass switcharoo. For me Massa's future is the next big thing, but if someone like Perez isn't good enough for di Montezemolo, then who else is that would realistically move?

Either way I'm excited to see how things will pan out in the driver market. I think Kovalainen and Glock deserve chances in better cars, but both have cemented positions in their teams to a certain extent.

Thoughts?
skr
Wow.. I thought LH would be a lifer at McLaren. I'm not so sure if he'll be as successful with MBZ as long as McLaren keeps being a top runner. I think LH will definitely return to McLaren again in his future.
clarkma5
I'm not surprised by Hamilton leaving McLaren...basically it looked like 2011 was him struggling with some personal things, 2012 he got on top of things but really needs to get "out of the parents' house" and move on to different pastures. I also think it makes a lot of sense in terms of timing. Mercedes has just committed to F1 through 2020 and, while they probably won't be a championship contender next year (though they could be, who knows?) they should still put together a solid car thanks to their technical structure (Ross Brawn, Aldo Costa, etc.). What it really does is put him in a strong position for 2014 when the regs change significantly. Mercedes is probably the safest bet for putting together the best engine in the V6 era at least to start with and with other regs pretty tight, 2014 is probably going to be heavily down to which car has the best powertrain in it.

So by using 2013 as a chance to learn a new team and build a structure around him that works while still getting some decent results, Hamilton should put himself in prime shape for 2014 while managing to satisfy his needs for personal growth.

Now as for Perez, I'm pretty surprised. I'm hugely impressed with Sergio but I do feel that his results are still a little too spotty to amount to much so I'm kinda surprised McLaren went for him instead of Di Resta, who seems more of a sure thing and also tied in through Mercedes sponsorship. Part of it could've been to suck him out from under Ferrari (Montezemelo has made big noises about Perez not being experienced enough for 2013, but IMO if Ferrari can't get Vettel to replace Massa and Perez maintained his form at Sauber I'm sure Sergio would've been their next choice in 2014) or maybe they just have a much better read on how he'll fit into the team than I do. Probably some of both.

I think it's really cool news overall, though. I'm glad to see Rosberg (who I've always liked) and Hamilton together, I'm glad that Schumacher will probably retire (not to say I dislike him but I think it's time he hung it up, though he may take Perez's seat at Sauber or replace Senna at Williams according to the rumor mills). I'm glad to see Hamilton do what's really the most obvious next step in his career, which is to be out from under the wing of Martin Whitmarsh (remember that he's been backed by McLaren for his entire career, which is over half of his life!)

I think Ferrari will keep Massa for 2013 with, like I said, an eye on Vettel in 2014 when his RBR contract is up but they may surprise me and swoop on Di Resta or Hulkenberg who are both really highly rated by the entire F1 paddock.
skr
It is good to see him move on. I'm sure it's on good terms and no love lost. I thought he would've at least carry on with his winning mentality and place himself in the best car possible, but if he's gambling on reg changes, then i'd agree that it's a good move..
skr
So it's official.. Schumacher retires.

http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/103045
shandyman5
QUOTE(skr @ Oct 4 2012, 11:14 AM) *
So it's official.. Schumacher retires.

http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/103045



Good riddance, he turned into a Brett Favre, with his coming out of retirement to Mercedes...
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