Wolff thinks Mercedes and Red Bull “can change the rules” together

© LAT Images for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff says “the one decision in Abu Dhabi was so brutal”, that “as racers” Red Bull “will recognise that”.

The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix ended in controversy, after race director Michael Masi ignored the Safety Car rules and protocols and created a situation where the race win and the world title were basically handed to Max Verstappen.

Mercedes, naturally, didn’t like what had transpired and immediately protested the decision. After the stewards dismissed the protest, the team announced they intend to appeal the decision.

This led to Red Bull calling Mercedes ‘bad losers’, but after the German team announced they will not go through with the appeal, Red Bull’s advisor Dr Helmut Marko said he understands their “displeasure” and called their withdrawal of the appeal “a grand gesture”.

Toto Wolff says he doesn’t hold Red Bull’s initial reactions against them.

“The statements at me certainly arose from the emotion,” the Austrian said.

“I can understand that when you have won a race and therefore the title, a protest can be frustrating.

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“I have no bad word at all against Christian, Helmut, Red Bull or Max. They were worthy competitors last year.

“We fought like never before, on and off the track, but in the end they won the championship and that has to be acknowledged.

“I think it also binds us stronger together in the future. Because we may have lost the championship with the Abu Dhabi decision, but Helmut, Christian and Max are racers and we saw what happened.

“And of course there are the explanations that similar things happened against them in the season. Maybe it balances out, maybe not.

“But just the one decision in Abu Dhabi was so brutal, the racer in them will recognise that. I know that.

“Together, I think we can change the rules to make the decision-making more conscious and that’s in the interest of us, Red Bull and all the other teams,” Wolff concluded.

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