One day closer to the launch of the Mercedes-AMG F1 W09 EQ Power+ and the work continues to ramp up...
All Formula One teams take different approaches to car launches
There's been a more relaxed atmosphere around the factory on Tuesday. Plans are falling into place, tasks are progressing, people are hard at work and the countdown clock continues to close on launch time.
All Formula One teams take different approaches to car launches. Some choose online reveals, others uncover their cars prior to the first morning of pre-season testing and some decide to host big events.
Mercedes has picked the latter, with the new W09 being presented to the world at Silverstone - where it will also take to the track for the first time. The reveal moment will not only be shown to media and guests at the circuit, but will also be streamed online for people around the world to see - putting our fans right at the heart of the action.
The hustle and bustle continues to escalate not only at the factory, but at Silverstone too - where 'set up' has been the key phrase of the day. Streaming a car launch online takes a lot of effort and equipment, so getting it all prepared and ready for show time was first on Tuesday's to do list.
The set up for our launch moment features involvement from several of our partners and suppliers, including Epson, whose projectors will be used during the launch, and TATA Communications, who will be providing our network infrastructure. It's not just the work of Mercedes, it's a much wider group of suppliers, partners and companies too.
Elsewhere in Silverstone's iconic 'Wing' pit and paddock complex, the finishing touches have been made to the event spaces, with the last furniture, decorations and branding being installed. It's our first big event of the year, so we want to make an impact and a great first impression ahead of the new season.
While the rest of the set up was being completed, event staff from Marketing and Hospitality were having a recce of the site and a run-through of the schedule. The 54-column master spreadsheet, now infamous in the Marketing office, has also gone through final checks. Everyone has their part to play - and it all has to be planned down to the last second (literally!)
Some tasks carried over from Monday to Tuesday, such as the distribution of kit for the 200-odd members of the team attending race events over this year. But, that wasn't the main task for the Teamwear and Merchandise crew...
Everyone has their part to play - and it all has to be planned down to the last second (literally!)
That's easier said than done, though
Their focus on Tuesday has been exchanging and tailoring the new TOMMY HILFIGER apparel. It's crucial that the team feel comfortable and confident in their kit at races and events. They need to not only look good, but feel good too, so making sure everyone has the right sizes is an important task.
That's easier said than done, though. People may have changed sizes since they last ordered team kit, or the new Official Apparel Partner's own sizing might be a little different. From each bag of kit distributed, there will always be one or two items that don't fit perfectly and need exchanging. So, Teamwear and Merchandise have been kept very busy on Tuesday.
It's been a similar story over in the race bays, with the mechanics and engineers hard at work prepping the new W09 for its big moment. The car started to take shape on Monday, with the chassis and engine being the main priority, but Tuesday was all about rear suspension and bodywork.
Those jobs look set to go on long into the night, but thankfully the build team works across three different shifts, to avoid putting the crew through unnecessarily-long days at the factory. Four people work on each shift, with a few extra support staff joining the party throughout the day.
In total, around 25 people are directly involved in the car build process, piecing together the hard work, graft and intense effort of hundreds of people across many, many months. It's a remarkable thing, really. The collective power of a 1,500-strong team. Everyone's individual projects coming together to form something that is so much more than just a car.
Tuesday has been a particularly exciting day for the build team, as it featured a major milestone - the engine fire-up. Having first roared into life a few weeks earlier, this was another chance to make sure everything was working well and going to plan. The engine's breath-taking rumble that reverberated around the factory indicated that was the case...
It's all hands on deck with just one more working day until the covers come off. Thousands of dedicated hours, many, many spreadsheets and countless meetings, all for one moment. And it's one of our biggest of the entire year.
The engine's breath-taking rumble that reverberated around the factory indicated that was the case...