Williams Head of Vehicle Performance Rob Smedley has defended Mercedes' current level of dominance in Formula 1, saying it is up to other teams to up their game in order to challenge them.

Smedley, who moved from Ferrari to Williams with Felipe Massa last year, was speaking as Mercedes reeled off a comfortable 1-2 finish in the Australian Grand Prix, raising concerns that it will dominate as it did in 2014 and prompting Red Bull's Christian Horner to urge for a change in the regulations.

However, Smedley believes Mercedes should be given more credit for the way it has attained its commanding position following a raft of operational changes ahead of the new 2014 power unit regulations being introduced.

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"I think F1 is all about levels of excellence and I think that they are now the absolute benchmark. The levels of excellence that they have attained throughout their whole operation is pretty outstanding and I would take my hat off to them and say that they've done an absolutely fantastic job.

"I'm not going to sit here and bitch and moan because they are quicker than us. I've been in situations with teams before where we've been dominant and now I'm in a team where there is anotehr team that is dominant and I think that, if you work hard enough and do everything right, then you get the rewards - and they've worked hard enough and done everything right, so hat's off to them.

Smedley went as far to say that Mercedes' dominance is 'good for the sport', saying it will spur others on too showcase their engineering excellence in attempting to get on terms.

"It's good for the sport because it shows how hard everyone is pushing and it shows that they are pushing really, really hard. It should be about levels of technical excellence and levels of operational excellence and that's what they've attained at the moment."