Nico Rosberg does not believe that missing the first official Formula 1 test of 2012 will affect Mercedes' competitiveness this season.
The team announced recently that it would not take part in the Jerez test on Feb. 7-10 in order to spend extra time developing its new W03 machine. But the German believes that taking such a tactical approach will pay off in the long term and prevent a repeat of the team's uncompetitive start to the 2011 campaign.
"It is just the choice that they have made and I am happy with that," Rosberg said. "It is the compromise between testing early enough and having enough time to develop. They need to find a middle way, and they have decided that that is the best way to do it."
Rosberg believes that the new technical structure at the team, including 2011 arrivals Geoff Willis and Aldo Costa, will ensure that a late start does not have a chain-reaction effect on the team's early season form.
"With the way the factory is going now, I am confident," he added. "This year we would not have managed to do the first race if we had run the car that late, but with the way the factory is now optimized, I am confident that we can quite happily make it happen and the car can race very soon after the first test, with just a few bits and pieces that need to be sorted out. That shows already that the team is a big improvement."