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Wolff: Mercedes to put team interest above any individual in F1 2017

Mercedes will continue to put team interests "above all" in the F1 2017 campaign, team boss Toto Wolff has stated.

Race winner Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 celebrates with the team
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1; Toto Wolff, Mercedes AMG F1 Shareholder and Executive Director; Paddy Lowe, Mercedes AMG F1 Executive Director (Technical); and Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1; at a team meeting
Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 celebrates his second position in qualifying parc ferme with team mate Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1
Race winner Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 celebrates with the team
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid, Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid
Second place Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid celebrates his World Championship at the end of the race
Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1, celebrates in Parc Ferme after finishing in second position and winning the championship with team mate Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1
Toto Wolff, Mercedes AMG F1 Shareholder and Executive Director

The Silver Arrows won a third straight constructors' title and took a third straight 1-2 in the drivers' standings in 2016, amassing a record-breaking 19 wins in F1's longest season to date.

But Mercedes' campaign was not without controversy, culminating in a contentious Abu Dhabi finale where Lewis Hamilton tried to back teammate and title rival Nico Rosberg into the pack against his team's orders.

Addressing the Mercedes F1 staff at the team's Brackley headquarters, Wolff accentuated the outfit's successes over a "remarkable" 2016.

"Our team has broken records in the history books. We have pursued our goals with passion and determination; and we were tested at each turn by unexpected challenges," he said.

"Nico was crowned champion and then departed the stage. Lewis needed strength of character to handle defeat with composure and dignity.

"We celebrated our success and we learned from our mistakes. Through all these moments, we have emerged stronger and more capable to face together the road ahead.

"Our position in the spotlight puts every decision taken and every word spoken under an intense microscope. They are debated passionately among our fans and interpreted by the media.

"But there has been enough talking, now. This is the period for calm and considered reflection; to savour our achievements and prepare for the next campaign."

Wolff went on to stress that Mercedes - which is yet to officially name Hamilton's teammate for 2017 following Rosberg's shock retirement - would not "compromise" the values that have allowed it to dominate the sport for three years straight.

"As we move forward, we will continue to be guided above all by the best interests of our team. This philosophy is bigger than any one season or any one person.

"It has forged a group that is humble in victory and gracious in defeat; hungry for challenge and resilient under pressure; never satisfied with the status quo, always seeking to improve.

"Our values have been the foundation stones of three world championships. And there will be no compromise as we begin our quest for a fourth in 2017."

Additional reporting by Jonathan Noble

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