JULY 8, 2015
Wolff apologises for Lauda's spaghetti slur
Toto Wolff has apologised after his fellow Mercedes chief Niki Lauda slammed Ferrari.
Amid all the claims about Mercedes making F1 'boring' by dominating too easily, team chairman Lauda exclaimed: "How is it Mercedes' fault if Ferrari mucks about with spaghetti rather than improve their car on the track?"
Reportedly after complaints from fans and the fabled Maranello marque itself, however, Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff issued an apology on Lauda's behalf.
"Everyone knows Niki's special connection to Ferrari and his passion for formula one," he said of the F1 legend and fellow Austrian.
"That's why he is sometimes very direct and says things that sound sharper than they were actually meant.
"We at Mercedes don't want to offend anyone," Wolff told Bild newspaper. "We respect Ferrari and look forward to exciting duels on the track. We take Ferrari as a challenger very seriously and have to work hard to defend our lead."
And he concluded: "The fact that they don't only muck about with spaghetti was made very clear to us in Malaysia."
Lauda's comments this week, however, were not limited just to Ferrari.
The famous triple world champion was also asked about reports linking Mercedes with a supply of turbo V6 engines to arch-rivals Red Bull.
Lauda is quoted by Italy's Autosprint: "We can only give engines to four teams, and all have long-term contracts.
"Also, (Dietrich) Mateschitz has always showed some animosity towards Mercedes. I don't know why but it's the reality."