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Wolff defends Mercedes' controversial Ferrari incident stance

Wolff defends Mercedes' controversial Ferrari incident stance

Wolff defends Mercedes' controversial Ferrari incident stance

Wolff defends Mercedes' controversial Ferrari incident stance

Having been accused of vetoing a penalty waiver for Ferrari in Las Vegas, Toto Wolff believes every other team boss would have followed the same course.

In the final weeks of the tight battle for second in the constructors' championship, the Silver Arrows denied claims that they were the team to deny the Scuderia the chance to avoid a penalty.

After smashing through a drain cover in Sin City, Carlos Sainz was forced to sit out of FP2 and left to pick up the pieces, having suffered an engine penalty and lost costly track time in the process.

The points that Sainz dropped were significant for the finale, as Mercedes edged ahead of Ferrari by just three points in Abu Dhabi.

READ MORE: Mercedes chief Wolff pleads for greater competition in F1

Carlos Sainz collided with a drain cover at the Las Vegas Grand Prix
Mercedes managed to beat Ferrari to second place in the constructors' championship by the barest of margins

Wolff explains decision

"As a team principal for a rival team that is fighting for P2, I need to look at the regulations and at the full scope of possible actions of ourselves in order to finish P2 in the championship," Wolff told RacingNews365.

"If the regulation says so, I need to act for the benefit of the team and 2,500 people.

"If we lost the championship by five points because I have acted in sporting fairness, and the rules would have allowed me to actually penalise the car, I need to do this. Every other team principal will do it as much as it's unfair.

"I need to decide, is it unfair for a rival driver? It is. But I have 2,500 people that I'm literally responsible for - that pay mortgages and school fees. So, it's a no-brainer."

In hindsight, Wolff will be pleased that Ferrari weren't able to avoid a penalty that weekend, with the points they lost ultimately killing off their hopes of finishing as the best of the rest in the constructors' standings.

The Las Vegas Grand Prix suffered controversy throughout its first event

READ MORE: Horner reveals key to Red Bull dominance in F1 rivals dig

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