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Bird admits Young Driver Test disappointment
Mercedes test driver Sam Bird admits he's disappointed he won't get to drive for the team at the Young Driver Test next month.
As part of its punishment for carrying out a Pirelli tyre test with a 2013 car, Mercedes was banned by the FIA's International Tribunal from taking part in the Young Driver Test at Silverstone. Bird ran for Mercedes on all three days in 2012 - when the team tested at Magny-Cours - and the ban means he is unable to get to drive a Formula One car in anger this year.
Speaking exclusively to ESPN ahead of the British Grand Prix, Bird admitted it was disappointing to miss out on the opportunity to drive the W04 but said he would focus on helping the team off the track.
"I'd be lying to say it wasn't a personal disappointment," Bird said. "But I love getting the opportunities that Mercedes gives me and I really treasure them. It was going to be an opportunity to do some hard work which we were all looking forward to, now we have to find other ways of overcoming that penalty at the factory and with my work in the simulator, so that's what I'm focused on. I'm a team member first and foremost, so it's all about doing the best for the team."