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Wolff concedes "hard to repeat" Hamilton challenge

Wolff concedes "hard to repeat" Hamilton challenge

Wolff concedes "hard to repeat" Hamilton challenge

Wolff concedes "hard to repeat" Hamilton challenge

Toto Wolff has conceded Mercedes will find it "hard to repeat" Lewis Hamilton's qualifying heroics from Singapore in Japan this weekend.

Hamilton qualified third at the Marina Bay Circuit with an effort that fell just 0.054secs shy of Charles Leclerc's pole benchmark.

But cautious of the different requirements of Suzuka, the Mercedes team principal has acted quickly to cool expectations of a repeat performance.

"Our target is to rebuild the momentum we had before Singapore and capitalise on the positive underlying performance of the car," said Wolff.

"There are still five opportunities to score good points and end the year strongly. Suzuka will give our package some challenges, and it will be hard to repeat the qualifying performance we saw in Singapore.

"But I hope that will be balanced out with a stronger Sunday afternoon. "F1 hasn't been to Japan since 2019 and the team is really looking forward to being back. It's such a special track; one of the most challenging for both man and machine."

Mercedes glimpse potential

Although Hamilton qualified third, George Russell failed to escape Q2 and the pair endured a difficult evening in the race finishing ninth and 14th.

But Wolff has always maintained that Mercedes learn more from the tough days than from the more straightforward outings, and he was again keen to focus on the positives despite the outcome.

"It was a very difficult Sunday for us in Singapore," reflected Wolff.

"There were still some positives to take because we saw glimpses of the car's pace and potential. But we couldn't convert that into points in the race itself, although the car showed it was competitive in free air. "We've had plenty to debrief and analyse over the past few days and many learnings to take forward. Thankfully we can move quickly on to the next race and a new challenge for us to tackle."

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