Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has confirmed Valtteri Bottas will be allowed “to go flat out” against teammate Lewis Hamilton in the Formula 1 world drivers’ title battle despite the expanding points margin between the pair.

While the last two F1 world championship fights have seen Mercedes prioritise Hamilton once the points gap was deemed too great for the Finn to overhaul, which came to a head when Bottas was ordered to allow his teammate to overtake him for victory at last year’s Russian Grand Prix, Wolff says he’s still happy to see both his drivers fight for the F1 world title.

Hamilton currently leads the standings by 65 points from Bottas with Max Verstappen fading to 87 points behind the F1 championship leader following his first lap retirement at the Belgian Grand Prix last time out.

With both his drivers the main F1 title contenders, Wolff says he’s happy to let the them fight for the F1 title over the next races.

“We’re going to encourage Valtteri as we did to go flat out, without getting ahead of ourselves. This is still a championship that is not won, neither – not the constructor nor the drivers,” Wolff said.

“Both of them have been very intelligent in their driving and fighting with each other, it’s one of the strengths of the team and I’m very proud of how they do it.

“Therefore Valtteri is free to go and fight for victories and for the best possible situation in the championship.”



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