Wolff hoping to avoid Hamilton-Bottas conflict

Toto Wolff hopes he will not have to deal with any infighting at Mercedes if the relationship between Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas deteriorates in a battle for the Formula One drivers' title.

Mercedes made Formula One history at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix on Sunday by becoming the only team to secure one-two finishes in the opening four races of the season.

Victory for Bottas gave him a one-point lead over team-mate Hamilton, with Sebastian Vettel 35 points adrift of the Finn.

Mercedes team principal Wolff is eager to ensure there will be no repeat of the conflict between Hamilton and Nico Rosberg when they fought it out for the title. 

"It reminds me a little bit [of 2014, 2015 and 2016]," said Wolff.

"You have two drivers that have the ambition and the ability to win a championship and it's up to us, together with them, to be very aware of that situation and remember that very quickly [Sebastian] Vettel or [Charles] Leclerc could be back into the game.

"We mustn't be carried away with the four first results."

The German added: "And definitely the relationship matters in order to avoid what we went through between Nico and Lewis.

"We are lucky that they have a very good relationship. They get on with each other, there is not a lot of games in the background. And I'm very happy about that.

"But as a matter of fact, we have to be conscious. We have seen relationships deteriorate. Both of the drivers, the respect needs to stay there.

"We're very strong as a team and we wouldn't allow the relationship between drivers to deteriorate to a point that it has a negative effect on the team.

"If that would ever be the case, again after Nico and Lewis we would issue yellow and red cards. But we are not there."

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