Having swiftly ascended through the ranks with impressive performances in karting and F4, Antonelli's skip to Formula 2 this season intensifies the anticipation.
Wolff: Kimi needs time
Despite Wolff's emphasis on tempering expectations, he concedes that Mercedes harbours a special talent in the burgeoning racing sensation.
"We got Kimi under the wings in 2012 and he was a great kid already then," he said.
"You could see the character [and] he was strong. We had him in the garage and there was a lot of confidence. In go-karting his track record was immense and then you put him in the junior formulas and he wins every single season in his rookie year.
"But we've got to be careful because there's a lot of hype around him. Putting him into F2 is a big step because those cars are heavier and much more powerful. If we give him his time and don't expect him to be killing it in his first season, I think he can be a really great one in this sport. He's 17 - this is so young."
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