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Toto Wolff: 'Lewis and Valtteri are in a great place!'

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Mercedes AMG F1 boss Toto Wolff believes the world championship team has done its work this winter to the best of its ability as it embraces a new challenge.

Wolff states that the 2017 is the "dawn of a new era" following the introduction of F1's new regulations.

While many still perceive Mercedes as the clear favourites for 2017, Wolff isn't taking any rival granted but is relying on the German squad's work and diligence.

"We have tackled with determination the challenge of the new regulations," Wolff says.

"We have been very successful over the last three years through stable rules - but no team has ever maintained its success over such a big regulation change before.

"In a way, it's just what the doctor ordered. To have such a challenge is good for the team."

Wolff insists that while the team has its targets and expectations, they must also be handled accordingly on a relative basis.

"There is an art to managing expectations. You must not set them too low - but you must also keep them under control.

"With new regulations, everyone starts with zero points. It provides opportunities as well as risks for every team on the grid.

"You only need to look back to 2009 to see how unpredictable Formula One can be, with Brawn winning the Championship after being on the brink of extinction."

Much has been written about the arrival of new recruit Valtteri Bottas and how the Finn will perform against Mercedes star Lewis Hamilton. Wolff won't go out on a limb and make any predictions about who may have the upper hand, but insists the team is happy with the current relationship between its chargers.

"Lewis and Valtteri are in a great place. They have a respectful and friendly relationship from what we've seen in our team briefings so far.

"It's an exciting time for them because these new cars are a real physical challenge. Both felt from testing that the G-Forces are enormous and they are embracing the new challenge of F1 2017.

"Having spoken to the drivers, these machines are violent - just like Formula One cars should be. I have been out on track watching them and, next to the previous generation of cars, these are properly spectacular cars.

"From a fan perspective - and a part of me will always be a fan - it really is something special. Any true motorsport lover simply has to see them in the flesh. "
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