Toto Wolff provides an update on Lewis Hamilton’s contract and explains his Mercedes teammate’s “doubt.”
Toto Wolff provides an update on Lewis Hamilton’s contract and clarifies his Mercedes teammate’s “doubt.”
Toto Wolff, Mercedes team chief, claims there are “no stumbling blocks” with Lewis Hamilton’s contract this time around, but that some agreements are taking “a few days longer.”
Lengthy contract negotiations last season ended in February this year after months of speculation regarding the seven-time world champion’s commitment at the team for 2021, with Hamilton admitting it “ruined” his winter.
Eventually, it was announced he would be re-signing on a one-year deal, not thanks to delays like Hamilton testing positive for COVID-19, as well as normal contract discussions like both driver and team having to agree on the length of the contract, and things such as a set number of appearances for the media and partners per year.
Hamilton, on the other hand, has expressed interest in forming a combined philanthropic foundation with Mercedes to “promote diversity in Formula One.”
Both Hamilton and Wolff were insistent this season that they intended to resolve their differences sooner rather than later, with the reigning world champion setting a deadline of the summer break for Mercedes.
Wolff, who earlier stated that the 36-year-old will sign a multi-year contract with the team, said that talks were going well.
“[We] are really laid back since it’s going well, we’re discussing there are no stumbling blocks, it’s just about agreements, which takes a few days longer,” he explained.
“So, yeah, good conversations.”
This season, there has been a lot of talk about Mercedes’ 2022 lineup, with some speculating that Valtteri Bottas’ tenure with Hamilton is nearing to an end, and that George Russell will take his place next year.
However, prior of the Styrian Grand Prix, Hamilton stunned the media by stating that there was no need to change his team-mate next season, despite rumors to the contrary.
“We have initiated negotiations, and there isn’t much to tell – just that we have had discussions and things are looking up, so…,” he said. Yes, Valtteri is now my teammate, and while we’ve both had our ups and downs in our careers, he’s a terrific teammate, and I don’t think that needs to change.”
Wolff also stated that teammate banter was not on the table during conversations.
“No, we have never discussed line-up preferences,” Wolff said to Sky Sports.
“Brinkwire Summary News” says, “That is never something that.”