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Lauda: No hard feelings towards Brawn

Monday 2nd December 2013

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Lauda: No hard feelings towards Brawn

Lauda: No hard feelings towards Brawn

Ross Brawn will leave Mercedes on good terms as Niki Lauda insists there are no "negative emotions" nor were there any behind the scene issues.

Last week Mercedes confirmed that Brawn would be leaving the team at the end of this year, putting an end to months of speculation.

Brawn cited next year's new regulations as the reason behind the timing of his decision to leave Merc, where he has been in charge since the German carmaker brought Brawn GP at the end of 2009.

Asked by FAZ if he was 'surprised' by Brawn's decision, Lauda, a non-executive director at Merc, said: "No, not at all.

"Ross and I have a very good relationship. We have spoken a lot with each other, I repeatedly asked him to stay one more longer.

"Those were good discussions. And he turned me down kindly and without any negative emotions."

He added: "This is his personal decision."

As for claims that Brawn felt hampered by there being too many bosses in the mix with Lauda, Toto Wolff and Paddy Lowe each having a role, Lauda insisted: "I absolutely deny that.

"I am the supervisory helicopter looking down from above. Toto is responsible for finances and all things commercial, Paddy takes care of the technology, they are equal.

"Certainly with the departure of Ross Brawn things are now simpler with a more director structure, which can be a step forward.

"But Ross Brawn will be missing and I'll pay close attention to ensure there's no vacuum."

The question everyone is now asking is what next for Ross Brawn.

The 59-year-old has been linked to a move to Honda, who will power McLaren from 2015, as well as a return to Ferrari.

However, for now, Lauda says he's going fishing.

"Ross told me and the 700 Mercedes employees that he would like to do other things, that he would like to go fishing and spend time with his family. And he wants to make room for others on the team."

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