Painful 2015 Singapore defeat still on Wolff's mind

Toto Wolff (AUT), Mercedes F1 Team Business Executive Director

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff knows that predictions have been futile this season, but he's still placing Ferrari at the top of his list for Singapore, a venue where the Silver Arrows outfit has typically struggled in the past.

The Scuderia and Mercedes split top honors at Spa and Monza, F1's high-speed tracks, with Sebastian Vettel winning in Belgium and Lewis Hamilton prevailing in Italy as the pair continue to fight for the world title.

Wolff was obviously satisfied with his team's performance in Italy, but next weekend's event could prove challenging once again for the German manufacturer.

"The result in Italy was a great reward for everyone in the team who has been working tirelessly to improve our performance," Wolff commented in Mercedes' race preview.

"We knew that the race in Monza would be another big challenge for us, after the defeat in Spa, but we managed to prevail through a combination of individual skill and fantastic teamwork.

"However, we also know that we've been strong at Monza in recent years and the track characteristics make the Italian Grand Prix a bit of an outlier.

"Singapore, on the other hand, has features that we've struggled with in the past.

"The short straights, the slow, tight corners and the bumpy surface all make the Marina Bay Street Circuit one of the trickiest tracks of the season for us."

Three years ago, Hamilton and Nico Rosberg qualified outside of the top-four at the Marina Bay circuit, while the German was the team's single points scorer, finishing just off the podium.

It was an eye-opening performance for the wrong reasons, and one that still resides at the back of Wolff's mind.

"In 2015, we endured one of our most painful experiences in recent years there," he remembers.

"Last year, we started the race from the third row - and came home with a win and a third place.

"On paper, the track should favour the Ferraris, but the Championship fight is so close that predictions are almost meaningless.

"One thing that's guaranteed in Singapore is a great spectacle. The track under the lights looks stunning both for the TV audience and the fans in the grandstands.

"For the teams, the race is one of the most demanding ones as the high temperatures and humidity levels make life in the garage tough."

Despite the anticipated difficulties, Wolff knows his troops will give it their all in Singapore as they battle for a fifth Constructors' title.

"We're in the middle of a monumental Championship fight and I'm simply amazed by the energy in Brackley and Brixworth at the moment," he said.

Each team member knows that we're facing the biggest challenge in our recent history. But every man and woman in the team is willing to push themselves to the limit.

"We will be fighting with everything we've got for these two Championships."

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