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Mercedes want a third car on F1 grid

Mercedes want a third car on F1 grid

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Mercedes want a third car on F1 grid

Mercedes want a third car on F1 grid

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff believes allowing teams to run three cars on the grid would help bring more young drivers into Formula 1. The Silver Arrows might face a 2019 dilemma as they try to find a seat for academy driver Esteban Ocon.

Ocon lost out on a likely switch to Renault when the French squad swooped for Daniel Ricciardo.

The Frenchman's seat at Force India is also uncertain as he battles current team-mate Sergio Perez for a seat alongside Lance Stroll, who is certain to sign next year - if he does not switch from Williams this season.

McLaren have declared an interest in Ocon, while Mercedes could use their engine partnership with Williams to facilitate a move, but neither side has met their expectations in 2018.

With Valtteri Bottas keeping his place alongside Lewis Hamilton to block Ocon's progress to the big team, Wolff has a plan that would aid inexperienced racers.

"I have a simple solution," said Wolff. "Give us a third car. Make it mandatory to put a young driver with maximum two years [experience] in that car.

"The costs wouldn't be huge. The grid would be packed and we would have fantastic shows of new kids on the block coming up and fighting hard with the Valtteris and Lewis of this world, and surprising us."

Red Bull have helped several drivers make it from their academy to F1 by using Toro Rosso as a junior team, but Wolff does not expect Mercedes or rivals Ferrari to follow suit.

"Owning another team just to find a place for your young drivers doesn't make sense for us," said Wolff. "And I think the big teams are not going to take risks with young drivers.

"Now you can say that is boring. I think it is boring. I think we should take risks, we should put 18 or 19-year-old top talents in a top car and give them a chance.

"But the problem is that if you lose a drivers' championship or a constructors' championship because they are on a learning curve, that is obviously not great.

"We have not done it and Ferrari have not done it in the past. So we need to question it."

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