Mercedes Boss Slams “Muppet Show” Started by a Single Tweet Firing Stern Warning to F1 Hopefuls: “Kids Should Be Wary on Twitter…”

Published 08/28/2022, 1:00 PM EDT
Motor Racing – Formula One – Hungarian Grand Prix – Hungaroring, Budapest, Hungary – July 29, 2022 Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff ahead of the Grand Prix REUTERS/Lisa Leutner

Toto Wolff as a team boss of Mercedes makes the most sizable decisions for the team’s success, in both the short and the long term. One of the crucial decisions for long-term success is choosing the driver that aligns perfectly with the team’s goal, and thus, the junior driver programs are born.

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Over the years, Mercedes has invested in noteworthy drivers like Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton. Following the success of its initial investments, in 2016, it launched the junior driver’s program, which features George Russell and Esteban Ocon as proud graduates of the German’s investment.

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In light of the recent drama of the 2022 silly season, where Alpine junior driver program graduate, Oscar Piastri released a public statement denying any ties with the French manufacturer, Toto Wolff commented on the decision made by the Aussie.

He said, “I have bigger problems than enjoy to sit on the balcony like in The Muppet Show to watch the show pan out in front of my eyes.” 

“I think it’s important that junior programmes are being respected. I think some of the kids should be wary on Twitter what they said about multinational organisations. But I have no insight into the contracts.”

“I believe in karma, I believe in integrity. But I’m not here to judge because as I said, I don’t know the legal situation.” Wolff concluded.

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Notably, Alpine invested quite a bit in the development of the former F2 champion who turned down a dream opportunity for many, to race in F1. As things stand, it seems the two parties are in a legal battle over the contractual details that tie Piastri with the Enstone outfit and his future still is a mystery to the whole paddock.

Members of the Mercedes junior driver academy

Presently, Mercedes have both Lewis Hamilton and George Russell on a contract until the end of 2023. Both the drivers are in the opposite spectrum of their careers, as the paddock deems Russell to be the long-term replacement for the driver nearing his retirement, Hamilton.

Nevertheless, once Hamilton hangs up his racing helmet, the Mercedes would have a vacant seat up for grabs. The Mercedes junior driver academy pilots would be the front-runners for the honor of representing the 8-time constructor champions.

Earlier in the year, Mercedes announced, “We are proud to announce a roster of seven talented young drivers who will be competing across categories from karting to Formula 2 in 2022 with the team’s support. Our 2022 junior drivers are Andrea Kimi Antonelli, Paul Aron, Yuanpu Cui, Luna Fluxa, Daniel Guinchard, Alex Powell and Frederik Vesti.”

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All these young athletes are aspiring racers who are hungry for success and aim to reach the pinnacle of motorsport in the future. With Mercedes promoting Russell from this program, it showed that team backs the talent it invests in.

Who do you think Mercedes will sign in the future? A driver from their academy or another team on the grid?

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Anish Arora

193 articles

Anish Arora is an F1 Author at EssentiallySports. It is the competitive nature of the sport that not only made him an adherent follower of F1, but also inspired him to start his journey as an author for the most prestigious racing series in the world. Anish initially started writing for Formula 1 during his undergrad and now is a huge fan of the 'Silver Arrows'.

Edited By: Ranvijay Singh

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