Toto Wolff Reaffirms Mercedes’ Loyalty to Hamilton Amid Verstappen Talk

Published 03/03/2021, 9:45 AM EST
ISTANBUL, TURKEY – Race winner Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP celebrates winning a 7th F1 World Drivers Championship with Mercedes GP Executive Director Toto Wolff on the podium during the F1 Grand Prix of Turkey at Intercity Istanbul Park in Istanbul, Turkey. (Photo by Joe Portlock – Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)


Lewis Hamilton extended his partnership with Mercedes until the end of 2021. Toto Wolff has clarified that they will start the 2022 negotiation talks earlier this time around. Meanwhile, the F1 community is thinking about who will succeed Hamilton he decides this is his last season.

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Recently, Red Bull boss Christian Horner claimed that if Hamilton were to leave Mercedes, Verstappen would be at the top of their list. Mercedes boss Toto Wolff acknowledged the Red Bull driver’s talents in a recent interview.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing looks on during the Aston Martin Red Bull Racing Cooler Runnings event at Station Pier, Port Melbourne ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Australia in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

“Max is certainly an outstanding young driver that will be on everybody’s radar in the future. But we are not flirting outside before we have a clear understanding with our two drivers,” said the Austrian. However, he clarified that the first priority will be to sign Hamilton for another term.

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Mercedes will deal with Hamilton first, claims Toto Wolff

The primary reason for a one-year deal is stated to be the lack of time. Learning from the last year’s negotiation, Wolff had stated that he will start the new contract talks earlier than usual. Therefore, the parties will get more time to talk about multiple terms to chart out another contract.

Wolff also explained that just because of the huge success that the pair have found together, their loyalty lies with Hamilton.

“The relationship that we have, the trustful relationship, will mean that any conversations we will have on 2022 and the future we’ll first deal with him.”

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MEXICO CITY, MEXICO – Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP prepares to drive on the grid before the F1 Grand Prix of Mexico at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico City, Mexico. (Photo by Charles Coates/Getty Images)

“The symbiosis that we have in the relationship is always that we have a mutual understanding of what we want to do in the future. And that will be also the case in the discussions with Lewis going forward,” explained Wolff.

Hamilton has spoken out earlier that he does not feel the need to commit long term at the moment. Whether or not the partnership continues for another term, this season is critical; the mutual focus will be to claim the record-breaking eighth championship.

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Do you think Mercedes and Hamilton’s partnership will continue for another term?

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Ayush Manjunath

580 articles

Ayush Manjunath is a Formula 1 author for EssentiallySports with more than 500 articles to his name. A Law graduate and a current Sports Management student, Ayush also has a certificate from UCLA on Sports, Media and Entertainment Management. He has an undying love for motorsports and lives to see Max Verstappen, George Russell, Charles Leclerc, and Lando Norris battle for the championship one day!

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