Wolff: Mercedes-Ferrari relations tense, but also productive

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"When the flag drops, the bullshit stops," once said the great Jack Brabham, and Toto Wolff concurs with that sentiment when it comes to Mercedes' relations with Ferrari.

The two teams are linked by a fierce rivalry in Formula 1 that has often led to a contentious rapport fueled by one or the other.

This year, the Scuderia's much debated dual-battery system was called into question by Mercedes, while the German squad's innovative wheel rims were frowned upon by its arch-rival in the latter part of the season, discouraging the Silver Arrows team from running the component for fear of being protested.

For Wolff however, the high-strung contention between the two teams this year was just par for the course.

"I think it is very difficult to maintain a very amicable gentleman attitude during the season when each group is obsessed about winning," said the Merc boss.

"We can see that things are coming back to normality now, because it is our joint platform and we need to make it function."

Indeed, as the two biggest players in the sport, with massive influence and clout, Mercedes and Ferrari will work together towards a common goal a time when Grand Prix racing undergoes fundamental changes.

"We need to have a relationship to discuss things and that is why I think it is completely normal that there are times when it is more difficult and there are times that it is easy," added Wolff.

"Those times where we talk to each other in a productive way are very important for F1, and for us as teams."

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