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Appearing in Mercedes AMG colours for the first time, Lewis Hamilton claims he feels a hunger for success at Brackley, stronger than he has ever known before, clearly referring to his former team, McLaren.
Despite the excitement generated by the Englishman's much anticipated arrival at his new team, over the last couple of days it is speculation over the German team's management that has dominated the headlines. However, with Ross Brawn dismissing speculation that he is to be dumped in favour of (McLaren Technical director) Paddy Lowe, Hamilton finally got his turn in the media spotlight.
"There is a great spirit here," he told reporters. "The guys seem hungrier than any group of people I've seen before. They seem seriously hungry to win and excited they have another shot at it this year.
"Every year there was always a great atmosphere at McLaren," he admitted. "But it's a different environment to come to and a different feeling because it's new and fresh. The guys seem to be just as on it if not more."
Aware of the ongoing media furore surrounding the team in a week which began with the shock 'defection' of Toto Wolff from Williams, Hamilton admitted he was impressed at the obvious desire to assemble as good a team as possible.
"Everything feels really positive for me.," he said. "I think it's important that they are always analysing and seeing what can be improved and what adjustments need to be made because they want to win. That's a big positive for me, to see that they are not scared of making changes, they are not scared of doing whatever they have to do to win. It seems like they are making some positive moves, I think."
Referring directly to Lowe, he added: "There are lots of good people here and I've obviously had great experiences with Paddy but he works with McLaren as far as I'm concerned."
Having dropped to fifth in 2012, the 2008 world champion is aware that things will not happen overnight. "I think it's important to be patient and it's important to be realistic."
When asked if he felt he had the prerequisite patience, Hamilton laughed and replied: "I'm pretty sure that I do. You have got to remember that I had a couple of half dodgy cars, 2009 in particular, but it did get better. So perseverance is going to be key for all of us.
"This is a marathon not a sprint," he added. "It's the long haul. I hope that this year we can be competitive. If we arrive at the first race and we are in front, it's going to be spectacular. But if we are not, we know we just have to keep working at it."
Check out our gallery, here.
Film of Lewis' recent visit to the Mercedes-AMG factory can be found, here, while film of his visit to the Mercedes-Benz museum can be found, here.
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