Mercedes boss braced for title showdown

Mon Nov 10, 2014 11:47am EST
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By Alan Baldwin

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - The next two weeks could be the biggest challenge yet for Mercedes motorsport head Toto Wolff as Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg take their Formula One title battle down to the wire in Abu Dhabi.

The Austrian is prepared for a bumpy ride all the way to the chequered flag at Yas Marina, in a race with double points on offer for the first time, and might need to think about installing seat belts on his pitwall perch.

However, the message he will be telling both drivers is that, whatever happens on Nov. 23, it is only a beginning and not an end.

"The end of the season is not the end of the world. We will aim to provide the two of them with a car which is capable of winning more championships," he told Reuters at a Brazilian Grand Prix won by Rosberg.

"They still have many more years in their careers to score championships."

Hamilton left Interlagos with a lead of 17 points, meaning he need only finish second to take his second title even if Rosberg wins the race.

Double points, 'Abu Double' to largely unimpressed fans, is an unprecedented novelty that may well be a one-off.

Wolff dislikes the concept, believes commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone does too now despite coming up with the original idea, and said it was "probably something we should be getting rid of for next season."   Continued...

Mercedes Formula One Executive Director (Business) Toto Wolff smiles during a news conference after the second practice session of the Australian F1 Grand Prix at the Albert Park circuit in Melbourne March 14, 2014. REUTERS/Brandon Malone