Formula 1

Mercedes' team boss warning is bad news for Nico Rosberg

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Despite two successful years, not all is well at Mercedes.

The Silver Arrows may have dominated 2015, with 16 wins in 19 races as Lewis Hamilton romped to his third world title, but the Briton's personal success has come at the expense of a friendship.

His teammate Nico Rosberg hasn't taken kindly to the beating he was given by Hamilton in 2015 which, allied with a number of minor incidents on track, has left tensions inside the Brackley-based team at an all-time high.

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Wolff's warning

Such is the doom and gloom between the pair, team boss Toto Wolff has warned both drivers could risk being dropped if their rivalry begins to affect the team's on-track performance.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Wolff said: "We took the decision of having two evenly matched drivers in order to make the team progress faster and better, it was a very conscious decision three years ago.

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"Going forward, we will consider if it is the best set-up for the team. Personality and character within the team is a crucial ingredient for the team success.

"If we feel that it is not aligned with the general consensus, spirit and philosophy within the team, we might consider that when we take a decision, in terms of the driver line-up going forward."

Ferrari threat looming large

The biggest reason for Wolff's warning is the increasing threat from rival teams as Ferrari, Red Bull and McLaren all look to close the gap in 2016.

While the latter two may have to wait a little longer, Ferrari, spearheaded by four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel, could well be in a position to challenge Mercedes on a much more regular basis next season.

If that is the case then most believe Hamilton will be the driver to hold off the Maranello attack.

Rosberg the only loser

In doing so, that would only further the detriment of Rosberg's chances of ever becoming Drivers' World Champion.

Add an increased threat from Vettel and Ferrari, Rosberg may well become the rear guard action to try and protect Hamilton.

If Vettel and Ferrari do manage to sustain a greater challenge then it is up to Rosberg to back up Hamilton in the battle for the Constructors' Championship. Should that championship be lost then it might not just be a bit of bad blood that pushes Rosberg out the door.

Will Mercedes win the Constructors' Championship again next year? Give your opinion in the comment box below!

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Formula 1

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