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F1 Abu Dhabi GP: Mercedes won't interfere in title decider - Wolff

Toto Wolff has reminded both Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg what is not acceptable in terms of sporting behaviour but says Mercedes won't interfere.
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Toto Wolff has reminded both Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg what is and is not acceptable in terms of sporting behaviour in the 2016 F1 world title decider and says it is Mercedes job not to interfere with the drivers' battle in Abu Dhabi.

At the start of the race weekend at the Yas Marina Circuit, the Mercedes team principal gave an open and demonstrative briefing to all garage crew and both drivers – something he says he does at most races – as he prepares to let both drivers battle fairly for the 2016 world drivers' crown.

With Hamilton likely needing to win in Abu Dhabi and see Rosberg finish off the podium to overturn the 12 point deficit, Wolff has stressed the importance of providing both drivers with flawless reliability but insists Mercedes won't interfere with the on-track action.

Given the requirements needed for Hamilton to win the title, it has been suggested he may back Rosberg into the chasing Red Bull and Ferrari drivers - something he has already dismissed as difficult to achieve at the Yas Marina Circuit.

“Tomorrow is going to be difficult, it has been already, to give them support when they need it, not interfere too much or over-manage but just let them fight it out on track,” Wolff said. “Give them a car that has pace, which we have seen today we were able to achieve, reliable car for tomorrow and a strategy that works for both.

“The main objective is to interfere the least in the F1 driver world championship and let the drivers fight it out on track.

“We can't interfere in the final race, we let them race until now. They both know what we deem as being sportsmanlike. There is a lot at stake tomorrow, it is a drivers' world championship to be won or lost. I think we have to cover all possibilities, as long as we are not overstepping the mark in what we consider to be unsportsmanlike driving we are fine.”

Down to the wire: The tensest F1 title finales of all time

Wolff has also reminded both drivers about not losing driving standards in the heat of the fight, having already seen his drivers collided with one another on two occasions in 2016.

In Spain the pair wiped one another out on lap one while in Austria a charging Hamilton clashed with Rosberg on the final lap while defending the lead which saw the British driver win and his team-mate slip to fourth, losing out on a nailed on one-two result.

“The drivers are great sportsmen and they know what it would mean to overstep the line which would cause a lot of controversy,” he said. “I have trust this is going to go well tomorrow for the benefit of the team, the team spirit and the fans.”

POINTS: The F1 Drivers' & Constructors' standings ahead of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix F1 finale

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mrfill

November 27, 2016 11:41 AM

"not interfere too much or over-manage" ......as they do usually. "There is a lot at stake tomorrow, it is a drivers' world championship to be won or lost." ... and how, exactly, will Mercedes lose the drivers world championship? as long as we are not overstepping the mark in what we consider to be unsportsmanlike driving we are fine ...Mercedes management now define their own version of 'unsportsmanlike driving' "The drivers are great sportsmen" ...which is why they never ever get handbags out and make phoney media stories



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