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Mat Coch writes:
Michael Schumacher says Mercedes can be successful in 2013, believing his former team has the structure in place to take it forward, something which was missing during his first two years with the squad.
"In the first two years, we definitely did not have the capability to fight on several fronts," Schumacher told Auto Motor und Sport. "If there were problems we had to take care of them, so the development was interrupted.
"Only now is there a structure that enables both," he continued. "It's a strong structure for 2013 and beyond. The car we had last year was built under the old conditions. I'm talking about quantity, not quality. That has always been the reason why development stagnated."
Mercedes proved a surprise contender as the 2012 season got underway, winning the Chinese Grand Prix before falling off the pace as the year wore on. By season's end it had slipped behind much of the middle order, unable to maintain the development pace Schumacher claims the new structure enables.
"Why that was still the case last year I do not understand," he admitted. "We created the basic conditions for (the team) to move forward. Maybe a few cogs in our structure had to mesh before that happens."
Schumacher, who turned 44 on Thursday, retired from Formula One after Mercedes announced it had signed Lewis Hamilton for 2013. Its fourth season back in the sport as a constructor, much is expected from the German squad, which won the 2009 championship under the Brawn banner.
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