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F1 Austrian Grand Prix: Wolff: Mercedes rivals growing and closing gap

Toto Wolff believes Ferrari, Red Bull, Williams and Force India can all potentially pose a significant threat to Mercedes in Spielberg.
Toto Wolff has picked out four different teams which Mercedes could come under pressure from at the Austrian Grand Prix and has echoed an ongoing sentiment that his team must 'eliminate errors which have cost points'.

The Mercedes team principal says Nico Rosberg's victory and Lewis Hamilton's fifth place from Baku is a disappointment for the manufacturer after it once again failed to produce a flawless race weekend for both cars.

Considering Mercedes' perceived dominance in F1, it has failed to secure a one-two finish since Russia which Wolff is keen to make amends at the Red Bull Ring.

“We didn't maximise our potential in Baku,” Wolff said. “At some circuits, you seem to find the sweet spot straight from the beginning - and that track suited our car in terms of demands on the power unit and aerodynamic efficiency. So, we left a little disappointed.

“But overall there were a lot of positives. Our package is clearly as competitive as ever and we have seen that both drivers are pushing right to the limit - sometimes even beyond it. This is what we want to see from them. It would be easy to get complacent or ease off the pedal after our recent success.”

Therefore, Wolff is expecting Mercedes to maximise its potential in Austria as it once again seeks a trouble-free race weekend but regardless of his team's performance he feels both Hamilton and Rosberg will be faced with stronger competition from four different teams in Spielberg.

“Our priority is to eliminate the small errors which have cost points here and there,” he said. “We need every weapon at our disposal operating at maximum capacity to fight off the opposition at the front, who are growing in number.

“Force India have been very strong recently, Williams are always quick in Spielberg and, of course, there is the constant threat from Ferrari and Red Bull - particularly at a home race for the latter. It should be an exciting weekend.”

Mercedes still holds a one-two at the top of the F1 world drivers' championship with Rosberg leading thanks to a 24-point advantage over Hamilton.
by Haydn Cobb

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June 29, 2016 10:08 AM

So its now official - entering the Teams That Toto Is Paranoid About This Week League at number 4 is Force India. Still no twitches of fear from Sauber, Manor, Haas or the dear old lady at McLaren, who has lowered herself out of 4th place after feeling a bit tired. Is it worth reading the rest or is it the usual Toto drivel?

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