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Hamilton, Bottas given 'fair game' in title fight

Hamilton, Bottas given 'fair game' in title fight

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Hamilton, Bottas given 'fair game' in title fight

Hamilton, Bottas given 'fair game' in title fight

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has vowed that Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas will be left to decide their championship battle between them on-track.

After Bottas' win at the Japanese GP, with Hamilton coming home in third, the drivers' title can only be won by one of the Silver Arrows' drivers.

Hamilton has a massive lead and can be crowned champion in Mexico next weekend if he outscores Bottas by 14 points.

Although Mercedes have used team orders to influence races this season, Wolff says they will be put away over the final rounds.

"I think we have to stay true to the values that we have defined in the past, and always play the most fair game," said Wolff.

"You can see how difficult it is sometimes like [in Japan], but I'm keen to see them race.

"Valtteri is very much an outsider with the points, 64 points. That's two and a half wins. We will give them equal opportunity and it's for them to race it out on track."

Hamilton might have opened up even more of a gap over Bottas in Japan had he been on a sharper strategy, something Mercedes admitted in their post-race debrief.

The Brit's frustration was clear mid-race, as he made his feelings clear over team radio, but Wolff has no issues with his star man.

"It's not hard at all, because we completely acknowledge that a driver is eager to win and wants to maximise every opportunity, and if you don't it's simply annoying," Wolff said.

"I think we completely understand each other's position. Lewis knows that very well and has total understanding for us in the garage. It's very difficult to take the right decisions in order to ensure maximum points.

"As long as you embrace the different positions, we have always come back, discussed it and moved forward as an even stronger unit."

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