Mercedes has "no doubts" on Hamilton's F1 commitment

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff says he has "no doubts" about Lewis Hamilton's commitment to Formula 1, but says Hamilton deserves the flexibility of signing just a one-year deal with the team.

Mercedes has "no doubts" on Hamilton's F1 commitment
Listen to this article

Following delayed discussions, seven-time world champions Hamilton and Mercedes finally agreed a fresh one-year contract in February, which will cover the 2021 season but will leave both parties to renegotiate a new agreement for F1's new era of regulations from 2022.

While the deal ended speculation about Hamilton's short-term future, it also raised questions about what would happen beyond the end of 2021.  

Hamilton commented he had "no real need necessarily to plan too far ahead in the future", preferring the flexibility of a one-year deal.

"I just wanted one year," he said. "Then we can talk about if we do more and keep adding [to] it if we have to."

Team principal Wolff explained Hamilton's unusually short deal doesn't raise doubts about his long-term commitment to the sport but instead gives the 35-year-old the flexibility his career deserves.

"No, no doubt about his commitment," Wolff said.

"First of all, he enjoys racing a lot. We enjoy working with each other and we discussed that a lot, but he's absolutely right. Times change.

"[There are] new priorities for all of us in terms of the way we live our health. He's very passionate about his initiatives, against racism and inequality.

"I think it's fair enough for a driver that has won seven championships, to give himself the flexibility in his mind to decide what he wants to do in the future. Whether this is racing or outside of the circus."

Read Also:

With both Hamilton and teammate Valtteri Bottas tied to new one-year deals, Wolff is relaxed about deciding his 2022 driver line-up but vowed he won't leave it as late as last winter.

"We have agreed that we want to pick up the discussions much earlier this year, to avoid a situation like we had in 2020, to run out of time and be in the uncomfortable position that there is no time left before the beginning of the season," the Austrian added.

"And that's also why we only did a one year contract; in order to allow us to discuss the future in racing and outside of racing longer and with the right amount of time.

"As a matter of fact, I think if Lewis continues to race, we will want to do this together. And we will discuss it shortly.

"With Valtteri, we know exactly what we have and we appreciate this.

"At the same time the landscape changes with new cars, new regulations, and we've got to take the right decision for the team going forward.

"That also means that we will have the discussions with our two drivers first, and then we will see where that goes."

shares
comments

Related video

How Mercedes could actually benefit from F1's budget cap
Previous article

How Mercedes could actually benefit from F1's budget cap

Next article

Ferrari: F1's "terrifying" technology spend not justified

Ferrari: F1's "terrifying" technology spend not justified
Load comments
The inevitable consequence of the Liberty F1 popularity boom Prime

The inevitable consequence of the Liberty F1 popularity boom

Sell out crowds at Formula 1 races are the norm rather than the exception these days, as grand prix racing is enjoying a massive boom under Liberty Media. But the Spanish Grand Prix highlighted numerous issues some circuits may face as demand for F1 soars

Formula 1
May 26, 2022
The danger for Red Bull in its Barcelona F1 team orders choice Prime

The danger for Red Bull in its Barcelona F1 team orders choice

OPINION: Red Bull walked into a team orders saga on its way to taking a Spanish Grand Prix 1-2 last weekend, where it took the lead of the 2022 Formula 1 world championships for the first time. But its decisions have added an element of risk to later races.

Formula 1
May 25, 2022
Why Mercedes' Spanish GP gains aren't as grand as they seemed Prime

Why Mercedes' Spanish GP gains aren't as grand as they seemed

Mercedes' strong showing in last weekend's Spanish Grand Prix prompted team boss Toto Wolff to say it had halved its deficit to the leaders and its Formula 1 title chances were back on after a rocky start to the 2022 campaign. But a closer inspection of the team's performance suggests its gains aren't as grand as they first appeared

Formula 1
May 24, 2022
What's next for the Green Red Bull controversy? Prime

What's next for the Green Red Bull controversy?

From the 'pink Mercedes' to the 'Green Red Bull', the Silverstone-based team has received suspicious glares from up and down the Formula 1 paddock over its car design exploits. But after being cleared by the FIA over its Spanish Grand Prix updates amid a backdrop of cries of foul play, what's next in this saga?

Formula 1
May 24, 2022
Spanish Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022 Prime

Spanish Grand Prix Driver Ratings 2022

In an unusually hectic Formula 1 Spanish Grand Prix, Charles Leclerc was denied a dominant performance by his Ferrari engine letting go which allowed Max Verstappen to pick up the pieces. But numerous flashpoints kept the race twisting and turning throughout, with one perfect score from an emerging contender

Formula 1
May 23, 2022
How Verstappen overcame his and Red Bull’s errors to win in Spain Prime

How Verstappen overcame his and Red Bull’s errors to win in Spain

Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari engine disaster offered an open goal for Max Verstappen and Red Bull to strike, but the reigning Formula 1 world champion still had to solve multiple errors and profit from a begrudged assist from team-mate Sergio Perez, which created an unexpectedly eventful Spanish Grand Prix

Formula 1
May 23, 2022
Why Red Bull can win a Spanish GP that looked perfect for Ferrari Prime

Why Red Bull can win a Spanish GP that looked perfect for Ferrari

Formula 1's return to Spain on Friday ended with Ferrari leading the way from Mercedes, while Red Bull could only manage third fastest overall courtesy of Max Verstappen. But its chances of victory are far from remote with a deeper dig into the times despite Ferrari's strong start...

Formula 1
May 20, 2022
The key aspects of Porsche and Audi's planned F1 entries Prime

The key aspects of Porsche and Audi's planned F1 entries

The VW Group’s German superpowers of sportscar racing have all but confirmed they are coming to F1 when the next set of engine rules come into force in 2026. Here's why both manufacturers are all set to take the plunge, and crucially how it might work

Formula 1
May 19, 2022