Lewis Hamilton does not believe he is taking a gamble in moving to Mercedes next season.
In the wake of his surprise decision to leave McLaren at the end of this year for a team that has won just one race in three years, Hamilton has no doubts he has done the right thing for his career.
"I don't (think it's a gamble)," he told news agency Reuters in an interview in Japan. "Not really. I've had such a great career with McLaren. I signed for McLaren when I was 13 and have had such an incredible journey with them.
"In the end I had two offers on the table which were very similar but one was a lot more exciting. It's just a challenge. I could stay in the great car that I have, which I've worked really hard to help develop with the team, or go to a car that's not so well developed and help it."
Hamilton is not shying away from the fact that Mercedes' current competitive situation is not as good as McLaren, but believes in the long term he can help move it forward.
"No, I'm fully aware the car at the moment is not a World Championship-winning car," he said. "The car that I'm in right now is a car that I've developed. Next year will be an evolution of the car that I've helped develop and that will be a championship contender.
"We [Mercedes] will work very, very hard to have a better year next year, but it takes time. You don't just arrive and things change. I think the focus is more long term."
Hamilton also revealed that he has yet to talk to McLaren Group chief Ron Dennis since deciding to leave the team.
"We didn't speak about it," said Hamilton. "He spoke to me in Singapore. That was about it. We haven't spoken since."