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Wolff: Mercedes has point to prove after disappointing Brazil result

  • Published on 28 Nov 2019 10:02
  • comments 1
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff believes his team has a point to prove at the season finale in Abu Dhabi following a tough outing in Brazil two weeks ago.

While Lewis Hamilton crossed the line in third place at the end of the chaotic race, he was bumped down to seventh place with a post-race penalty due to a time penalty following a collision with Alexander Albon.

Valtteri Bottas had problems of his own, as he was forced to retire from the race with a mechanical problem.

Despite Mercedes' dominance in the title fight in 2019, having wrapped up the constructors' championship with four races to spare, Wolff states that Mercedes must return to its high quality of performance in Abu Dhabi.

"Brazil was a disappointing race for us," Wolff said. "We did not have the fastest car on track and we lost a lot of points owing to our own mistakes.

"We analysed what went wrong, both in terms of our reliability and our decisions during the race, to make sure we don't repeat them. It was a good learning experience for the entire team and something that will make us stronger in the long run.

"The underperformance in Brazil means we head to Abu Dhabi with a point to prove. Yas Marina has been a good circuit for us in the last years and we'll push hard to continue in the same way.

"The race is one last opportunity for us to add another victory to the record of the W10 and it's one more chance to put on a great show for the fans before the winter break.

"We're looking forward to the fight because we know that in Formula 1, you're only as good as your last result."

'Incredibly difficult to say goodbye to Charlie, Niki and Anthoine'

Wolff also reflected on a difficult 2019 year, which has been somewhat marred by the deaths of three major players in the paddock.

On the eve of the Australian Grand Prix, F1 race director Charlie Whiting passed away. Ahead of the race in Monaco, Niki Lauda, who at the time was working as Mercedes' non-executive chairman, died.

In Belgian, Formula 2 racer Anthoine Hubert lost his life after being involved in a major collision on lap two of the Feature Race.

"It's been an incredibly hard year where we had to say goodbye to too many friends," Wolff reflected. "We were hit hard by the passing of Charlie, Niki and Anthoine, as well as important members from our team who we have tragically lost this year.

"At Mercedes, Niki left a void that we will never be able to replace - as a source of inspiration, as a voice of reason, but most importantly as a great friend. We hope we did you proud, Niki."

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  • What's left to prove, honestly?

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    • Nov 28 2019 - 20:23

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