'Magnussen promotion the right decision'

Tuesday 25-March-2014 12:04

McLaren Group CEO Ron Dennis is confident that promoting rookie Kevin Magnussen as a replacement for Sergio Perez was the right decision.

The 21-year-old Dane is the reigning Formula Renault 3.5 champion and replaced Perez as Jenson Button's partner at McLaren at the end of the 2013 season.

Magnussen then repaid the faith Dennis put in him by finishing on the podium in his debut race at the Australian Grand Prix earlier this month, before being elevated to second position after the disqualification of Daniel Ricciardo.

"Sometimes only one person can take that decision - in this instance it was me because there were a range of issues," Dennis told Autosport when asked who made the decision to replace Perez with Magnussen.

"There were a few occasions when I stepped in during 2013 and that was one of them."

Dennis added that he had no doubts about Magnussen's talent, adding that he has the potential to win the World Drivers' Championship.

"He has all the ingredients necessary to win the world championship but he has to be in a competitive car," said Dennis.

"One race is one race. We will see how four races go.

"But I don't have any concerns about his temperament, his focus or his commitment. And he is prepared to make whatever sacrifices are necessary - that is very clear.

"He has a phenomenal mentor in Jenson, they get on very well. He will keep Jenson honest.

"I don't think he could have done a better job.

"He made no mistakes at all throughout the weekend. He never put a wheel off the track, followed all the instructions but pushed very hard at the right times.

"I have nothing but praise for him. Third place [on the road] in your first Grand Prix, with the complexity of the regulations [and] a challenging qualifying in both wet and dry conditions - who could ask for more?

"It justified the selection process.

"Giving him the opportunity, [it] is always difficult to take those decisions as you can be wrong, and I am pleased that this one was right."

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