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2016 F1

Mercedes considers ‘unleashing’ driver rivalry – Wolff

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rivalry between teammates Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg

Rivalry between teammates Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg

Mercedes is considering unleashing the rivalry between teammates Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg, in a bid to spice up formula one.

For the past two years amid the German marque’s utter dominance, the silver-clad drivers have duelled for the title effectively alone.

But boss Toto Wolff warned before Christmas that he would have to consider changing the lineup if the bitterness of the rivalry ever spilled into team spirit.

However, he has now told the Mail on Sunday: “Our dominance is bad for formula one. It makes the racing boring.

“The moment you become a dominant force, you suffer and your brand suffers. You become the dark side of the force,” said Wolff.

“So I want the dominance to continue but if it were to continue like this, I need to think what to do so we do not become the enemy and how we can help the show.

“Maybe it’s about unleashing the two of them (Hamilton and Rosberg) completely. That would be a solution.”

An example, he admitted, would be to let each side of the garage control its own race strategy, which would be a vast shift from the approach of 2014 and 2015.

Nonetheless, Wolff insisted that it will still be important that the tough battles between Hamilton and Rosberg remain focused on the track.

“I don’t want fighting in the team,” he said. “I’d like the boxers to fight but not the trainers and the physios and everybody around the ring.

“I’d like the boxers to behave like boxers who fight very hard but after the fight has finished, you can be a sportsman and embrace your enemy. But the dilemma is there. It is easy when it is theory,” said Wolff.

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