The scale of the upcoming 2017 Formula One Championship challenge cannot be underestimated. With new aerodynamic regulations to be implemented, it means a reset for the entire field and there is genuine uncertainty about which team will emerge on top.
But for Mercedes, there is no question on the talent they will have for the 20 race season with new signing Valtteri Bottas paired with probably the most ferociously fast team-mate in the sport, Lewis Hamilton; and there are just 70 days until the red lights go out at the start of the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne.
For Toto Wolff, Mercedes team boss, there are no question marks over his new driver line up and has complete faith in triple World Champion Lewis Hamilton and new teammate, Valtteri Bottas, to get the job done and deliver them their fourth Constructors Championship in succession.
"Sometimes in life, unexpected circumstances provide interesting opportunities. Nico's decision in December was a big surprise - certainly a challenging situation for the team to handle. But weathering the storm makes you more resilient and we see this as another opportunity for the team to grow," explained Toto Wolff as he introduced the fourth driver to race for the Silver Arrows in the modern era.
"Valtteri is a no-nonsense guy: down to earth, straightforward and very focused. Pretty Finnish, to be honest, and a great fit for us. He has an impressive track record in the junior categories and nine podiums in F1. But now it's time for the next level, to see how he can step up to challenge for race wins and for Championships. We know that we are already behind the curve in terms of preparations for the new season, so we've got a busy programme to get him integrated into the team. One thing is for sure: as I know Valtteri, he will give it everything."
"We have confidence in Valtteri's ability and it's one of the reasons that he is the driver we set our sights on this winter. The next weeks will be busy as we work to build relationships so Valtteri understands the team and the car. But that's an exciting challenge that will bring us fresh energy and a new dynamic between the drivers. And, of course, we're working hard to give Lewis and Valtteri the car they need to do the job."