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Germany Mercedes GP
Full name Mercedes GP Petronas Formula One Team
Base Stuttgart, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Brackley, Northamptonshire, United Kingdom
Team principal/s Ross Brawn
Norbert Haug
2010 Formula One season
Race drivers 3. Germany Nico Rosberg
4. Germany Michael Schumacher
Chassis TBA
Engine Mercedes-Benz
Tyres Bridgestone
Formula One World Championship Career
Debut 1954 French Grand Prix
Races competed 12
Constructors' Championships 0
Drivers' Championships 2 (1954,1955)
Race victories 9
Pole positions 8
Fastest laps 9

Mercedes Grand Prix, officially Mercedes GP Petronas Formula One Team, is the Formula One racing team and constructor of Mercedes-Benz, which will race in the 2010 season. Mercedes-Benz debuted in Formula One in 1954, and competed with great success in the 1954 and 1955 seasons. However, after the 1955 season, Mercedes left the sport, and despite part-ownerships, and engine supplier deals in the 1990s and 2000s, it did not return as a factory team until November 2009. After a fifteen-year relationship with the McLaren team, Mercedes-Benz (through parent Daimler AG), in partnership with Aabar Investments, reached an agreement to purchase a 75.1% stake (Daimler: 45.1%; Aabar: 30%), in the Brawn GP team, pending corporate and regulatory approval.[1] Brawn had won the drivers' and constructors' championships in the 2009 season, their only season as a team following their buy-out of the Honda Racing F1 team.[2]

Former Williams driver Nico Rosberg will be joined by seven-time World Champion Michael Schumacher for the team's maiden racing season.

Contents

Early History

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Mercedes in Grand Prix motor racing (1930s - 1955)

Karl Kling at the wheel of the W196 at Nürburgring

Mercedes-Benz formerly competed in Grand Prix motor racing in the 1930s, when the Silver Arrows dominated alongside rivals Auto Union. Both teams were heavily funded by the Nazi regime, winning all European Grand Prix Championships after 1932, of which Rudolf Caracciola won three for Mercedes-Benz.[3]

In 1954 Mercedes-Benz returned to what was now known as Formula One racing (a World championship having been established in 1950), using the technologically advanced Mercedes-Benz W196 which was run in both open-wheeled and streamlined forms. Juan Manuel Fangio, a previous champion (1951) transferred mid-season from Maserati to Mercedes-Benz for their debut at the French Grand Prix on 4 July 1954. The team had immediate success and recorded a 1-2 victory with Fangio and Karl Kling, as well as the fastest lap (Hans Herrmann). Fangio went on to win three more races in 1954, winning the Championship.

The success continued into the 1955 season, where the same car was used again. Mercedes again dominated the season, with Fangio taking four races, and his new team mate Stirling Moss the British Grand Prix. Fangio and Moss finished first and second in that year's championship. The disaster at the 24 Hours of Le Mans on 11 June which killed Mercedes sportscar driver Pierre Levegh and over 80 spectators led to the cancellations of the French, German, Spanish and Swiss Grands Prix.[4] The team withdrew from motor sport, including Formula One, at the end of the season.

The company made a return to the sport in 1993 by unofficially supplying the Sauber team with engines, a partnership which was made official the following year. For 1995, Mercedes switched its engine supply to the McLaren team and bought a minority shareholding in the team. McLaren won three drivers' championships and one constructors' championship between 1995 and 2009. In 2009, Mercedes began supplying additional engines to the Brawn GP and Force India teams; Brawn won both championships.

Pre-Mercedes

The current Mercedes team can be traced back to the long-running Tyrrell Racing team, who competed as a constructor from 1970 until 1998. Tyrrell became British American Racing in 1999 who formed a partnership with Honda, eventually becoming Honda Racing F1 Team in 2006. Mercedes' predecessor, Brawn GP, was formed from the remains of the Honda Racing F1 Team after Honda's withdrawal in December 2008. The team was purchased by the team's management and re-branded as Brawn GP. Their association with Mercedes began when the team opted to use the Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines FO 108W at the last minute. Mercedes had required special provisions to supply Brawn as the regulations at the time dictated that an engine supplier could only supply two teams, and Mercedes supplied engines to both McLaren and Force India.

The team won its first race at the 2009 Australian Grand Prix, with Jenson Button winning six of their first seven races and ultimately going on to win the 2009 World Championship while team-mate Rubens Barrichello claimed victory in Valencia and Italy. Both Button and Brawn went on to seal the Drivers' and Constructors' World Championships in the penultimate race in Brazil. It was the first time in the sport's sixty-year history that a team won both titles in its maiden season.

2010 - Return to Formula One

Acquisition of Brawn GP

On 16 November 2009, it was officially confirmed that Mercedes would take over the running of Brawn, with Ross Brawn continuing his duties as team principal.[2] The team will continue to use its base in Brackley, United Kingdom, which is less than 30 miles away from Mercedes' Formula One engine plant in Brixworth.

Nico Rosberg was announced as the team's first driver on 23 November 2009 and on 23 December 2009, seven-times world champion Michael Schumacher announced that he will be returning to Formula 1, this time with the Mercedes team.[5] Of Brawn's 2009 drivers, Jenson Button has signed for McLaren, whilst Rubens Barrichello has moved to the Williams team for 2010 meaning that Mercedes will feature a brand-new driver line-up. The acquisition of Brawn meant that Mercedes parted ways with McLaren. The 40% stake that Daimler (which owns Mercedes) has in McLaren will be sold back to the McLaren Group for a reported £500m. One reason for Mercedes parting ways with McLaren was "because of McLaren's ambitious plans to build road cars", as McLaren plan to put the McLaren MP4-12C in production by 2011. However Mercedes said it would continue to supply engines to McLaren until 2015.[6]

Sponsorship

In December 2009, the team suffered an early setback when it was discovered that a planned eighty million pound sponsorship arrangement that had been signed by Brawn with Henkel in July was invalid.[7] Henkel claim they were unaware of the deal and have no interest in Formula One; the deal was allegedly made by a former Henkel employee on stolen company stationery for the purposes of defrauding the company. On December 22, Henkel announced that the dispute with the team had been resolved with a mutual agreement and that legal action would not be pursued, though the team would work with the German Prosecutor's Office to clarify the matter.[8]

On December 21, the team confirmed that Malaysian oil supplier Petronas would join the team as title sponsor.[9] From 2010 the team will compete under the full title of Mercedes GP Petronas Formula One Team.[10] According to some reports,[11] the arrangement is valued at thirty million Euro each year. Combined with the fifty million the team receives for winning the 2009 championship as Brawn, Mercedes has a budget of eighty million Euro without actually having dedicated anything to the budget themselves.

Racing record

Complete European Championship results

(key) (results in bold indicate pole position, results in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Chassis Engine Tyres Drivers 1 2 3 4 5
1935 Mercedes-Benz W25A
Mercedes-Benz W25B
Mercedes M25A 3.4 L8
Mercedes M25B 4.0 L8
C BEL GER SUI ITA ESP
Germany Rudolf Caracciola 1 3 1 Ret †† 1
Italy Luigi Fagioli 2 † 6 2 Ret †† 2
Germany Manfred von Brauchitsch Ret 5 Ret Ret 3
Germany Hermann Lang Ret 6 Ret
Germany Hanns Geier 7 DNS
1936 Mercedes-Benz W25K Mercedes ME25 4.7 L8 C MON GER SUI ITA
Germany Rudolf Caracciola 1 Ret ‡ Ret
Germany Manfred von Brauchitsch Ret 7 ‡ Ret
Germany Hermann Lang Ret ‡ 4 ‡‡
Italy Luigi Fagioli Ret 5 ‡ Ret ‡‡
Monaco Louis Chiron Ret Ret
1937 Mercedes-Benz W125 Mercedes M125 5.6 L8 C BEL GER MON SUI ITA
Germany Rudolf Caracciola 1 2 1 1
Germany Manfred von Brauchitsch Ret 2 1 3 Ret
Germany Hermann Lang 3 7 2 2
Switzerland Christian Kautz 4 6 3 6 Ret
United Kingdom Richard Seaman Ret 4
Italy Goffredo Zehender 5
1938 Mercedes-Benz W154 Mercedes M154 3.0 V12 C FRA GER SUI ITA
Germany Rudolf Caracciola 2 2 ↑ 1 3 ↓
Germany Manfred von Brauchitsch 1 Ret 3 Ret ↓
Germany Hermann Lang 3 Ret ↑ 10 ↑↑ Ret
United Kingdom Richard Seaman 1 2 Ret
1939 Mercedes-Benz W154 Mercedes M154 3.0 V12
Mercedes M163 3.0 V12
C BEL FRA GER SUI
Germany Hermann Lang 1 Ret Ret 1
Germany Rudolf Caracciola Ret Ret 1 2
Germany Manfred von Brauchitsch 3 Ret Ret 3
Germany Hans Hartmann 6
United Kingdom Richard Seaman Ret
Germany Heinz Brendel Ret

† Von Brauchitsch took over Fagioli's car after his own retired.
†† After Caracciola's car developed mechanical problems, he gave up and Fagioli took over as his car had already retired.
‡ Caracciola took over Lang's car after his own retired. Lang then took over von Brauchitsch's car. Caracciola retired Lang's car and then took over Fagioli's car.
‡‡ Fagioli took over Lang's car after his own retired.
↑ Lang's car developed a problem and was handed over to reserve driver Walter Bäumer. Caracciola fell ill and handed his car over to Lang.
↑↑ Lang got glass in his eye after his goggles were smashed by a stone. His car was taken over by reserve driver Walter Bäumer.
↓ Caracciola was burnt by leaking exhaust and handed his car over to von Brauchitsch, who later handed it back after suffering the same problem.

Complete Formula One results

(key) (results in bold indicate pole position, results in italics indicate fastest lap)

Year Chassis Engine Tyres Drivers 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Points WCC
1954 Mercedes-Benz W196 Mercedes 2.5 L8 C ARG 500 BEL FRA GBR GER SUI ITA ESP -* -*
Argentina Juan Manuel Fangio 1 4 1 1 1 3
Germany Karl Kling 2 7 4 Ret Ret 5
Germany Hans Herrmann Ret Ret 3 4 Ret
Germany Hermann Lang Ret
1955 Mercedes-Benz W196 Mercedes 2.5 L8 C ARG MON 500 BEL NED GBR ITA -* -*
Argentina Juan Manuel Fangio 1 Ret 1 1 2 1
Germany Karl Kling 4 Ret Ret 3 Ret
Germany Hans Herrmann 4 PO
United Kingdom Stirling Moss 4 9 2 2 1 Ret
France André Simon Ret
Italy Piero Taruffi 4 2

1955-2009: Didn't take part in F1

  • Constructors' Championship not awarded until 1958.

References

  1. ^ "Mercedes takes over Brawn F1 team". BBC News. 2009-11-16. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/motorsport/formula_one/8362295.stm. Retrieved 2009-11-16.  
  2. ^ a b "Mercedes takes over Brawn". Autosport.com. 2009-11-16. http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/80174. Retrieved 2009-11-16.  
  3. ^ "De geschiedenis van Mercedes-Benz in de Grand Prix-racerij". MotorRacingBlog.nl. 2009-11-20. http://www.motorracingblog.nl/?p=338. Retrieved 2009-11-30.  
  4. ^ Lang, Mike (1981). Grand Prix! Vol 1. Haynes Publishing Group. p. 82. ISBN 0-85429-276-4.  
  5. ^ BBC Sports news article (Retrived 23 December 2009)
  6. ^ Benson, Andrew (2009-11-16). "Mercedes takes over Brawn F1 team". BBC News. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/motorsport/formula_one/8362295.stm. Retrieved 2009-12-15.  
  7. ^ "Henkel says Mercedes deal is invalid". Autosport.com. 2009-12-14. http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/80574. Retrieved 009-12-15.  
  8. ^ Elizalde, Pablo (2009-12-22). "Henkel settles dispute with Brawn GP". Autosport.com. http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/80644. Retrieved 2009-12-22.  
  9. ^ "Mercedes GP signs long-term agreement with PETRONAS". Brawn GP. 2009-12-21. http://www.brawngp.com/readstory.asp?bgp=j%C1%AA%C0rZ%7Df.  
  10. ^ "Mercedes GP picks up Petronas". AUSmotive.com. 2009-12-21. http://www.ausmotive.com/2009/12/21/mercedes-gp-picks-up-petronas.html.  
  11. ^ Allen, James (2009-12-21). "Mercedes lands €30 million Petronas sponsorship". http://www.jamesallenonf1.com/2009/12/mercedes-lands-e30-million-petronas-sponsorship/.  

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