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Wolff: Ferrari are improving

NEWS STORY
08/08/2016

Once, just once, it would be good to hear what Toto Wolff and his Mercedes colleagues really think.

How refreshing would it be for the Mercedes Motorsport boss to admit: 'Hands up, we got it right. While others were dithering we got the new engine formula spot on. We also assembled a superb team, including two highly competitive drivers, and most days nobody can touch us. We are, and will remain for the foreseeable future, the class of the field'.

Instead, every race preview is filled with warnings about previously unheard of issues, the increasing threat from rivals and all manner of other reasons why we shouldn't take another 1-2, front-row lock-out and fastest lap for granted.

Talking to the official F1 website, Wolff comes close to admitting his team is currently unbeatable, but still goes against popular opinion by claiming that Ferrari remains a threat.

"I am not aware that we have received the trophy for the constructors' title yet, so we will come back nine more times!" he says of the audacious suggestion that both titles are already won.

"We are sceptical people and believe that you haven't won until it is mathematically over," he continues. "Not one single day earlier.

"Looking at our competitors, the expectations for Ferrari are always very high and living up to those expectations is a different matter. It needs time to develop and many times it is not a steady upward trend but you also have setbacks. And probably after a strong 2015 season we see a setback for Ferrari this year. But I do believe that they are improving.

"Red Bull clearly have a more competitive package as Renault has improved a lot and next year the new regulations clearly give huge opportunities. So let's see."

Asked if Red Bull has ousted Ferrari as second favourite he still errs firmly on the side of caution.

"There are still many more races to do and as nobody will be bringing major parts any more it is all about managing what you have. One car dropping back this season can end up having a huge advantage next year. So you have to have a long-term view about how things are panning out."

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