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Mercedes have learned hard lessons - Wolff

22 August 2017 15:19

Toto Wolff says Mercedes have learned "hard lessons" in their bid for consistency and believes Formula One's mid-season break came at the ideal time for the team.

Lewis Hamilton trails Sebastian Vettel by 14 points in the drivers' standings ahead of the return to racing at the Belgian Grand Prix this weekend.

Hamilton and Vettel each have four race wins to their name this season, but the Mercedes has struggled on circuits that have a high number of slow corners.

Belgium's Spa-Francorchamps track should be well suited to Mercedes with its long straights allowing the German team to utilise their straight-line speed.

But team boss Wolff is taking nothing for granted.

"The form book can be rewritten from one weekend to the next," he told Mercedes' official website.

"We have overcome a difficult start to testing and significantly improved a fast but tricky car; we have won six races from 11, including victories for both our drivers; we trail in one championship by 14 points, and lead the other (the constructors) by 39.

"But it hasn't been easy sailing. We have learned hard lessons, grown strong as a group and there are still many areas for us to keep improving.

"History has shown that the fastest car usually brings you the drivers' title; and the best and most consistent driver pairing wins you the constructors.

"So the priorities are clear: We must keep bringing performance to the car at every race - and keep racing without mistakes to maximise our performance potential at every track.

"From what we have seen in the first half of the season, the competitive balance will swing one way and another from circuit to circuit. Red Bull will be a threat if they can build on the performance they showed in Hungary.

"So we need to keep our heads down, stay humble regarding our strengths, diligent about our weaknesses and take the season weekend by weekend.

"On paper, people will assume that Spa should suit our car because it is a circuit where aerodynamic efficiency is extremely important. But we will be making no assumptions; we have to tick off the items on our work list and make sure we do the best job to maximise our potential points score."

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