Lewis Hamilton pointed out that he still has doubts about a future involvement in Formula 1 next year, given the continuing uncertainty about the role of the head coach of Mercedes Toto Wolff after this season.
Hamilton is about to win his seventh world championship title, but he has yet to renew his contract with the market-leading Mercedes F1 team.
The new contract had to be a formality, and Hamilton had said earlier that he wanted to stay with the team for a few years, but after winning the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix on Sunday he said that there was no guarantee that he would stay in F1.
Asked about the change in the Wolf team and the potential for a successor, Hamilton said he was still thinking about his own plans.
Of course I feel good, I feel very strong, and I feel I can do this for months on end, he said. But you talked about Toto-san and the expiration date, so there are a few things that stick in my mind.
I would like to be here next year, but of course there are no guarantees for that, and there are many things that worry me in the next life. Time will tell.
Fault! The file name is not specified. Lewis Hamilton played the first race after winning the 93. and after Mercedes had won his seventh design title. Dan Eastitene – Formula 1/Formula 1 by Getty Images
When Hamilton Wolff’s comments reached, the Mercedes boss denied the assumption that Hamilton really wanted to leave Formula 1.
I think that if he decides to leave Formula 1, which he shouldn’t, and I hope he doesn’t, we’ll have a pretty hectic racing market! But I think it’s a moment and an emotion, we’re all happy, but also very tired.
It’s the same for me. I understand his feeling that you’re questioning yourself and thinking about everything that’s important. If you turn on the news in the morning and turn off the news in the evening, it’s the battle we all have to fight.
We are here in our happy little town and we try to bring a bit of cheerfulness into the household, but the next day you return to a more complex reality. All this concerns us and in this respect it is normal for someone who feels apathetic to have these feelings.
Wolf adds: Just like Nicky Lauda in the 1970’s, he could wake up one morning on a racetrack and just say he wasn’t having fun anymore. I think it could happen to anyone. But we want to continue on this road, and we’re not finished yet. Lewis and I and the whole team know we’re not done yet.
In his previous answer to a question about Wolf’s future, Hamilton stated that he hoped a succession plan would be adopted.
I think I understand, and Toto-san and I have a lot of deep conversations, so I understand very well where he is, and we share and carry most of the weight together, I think he said. I’ve been here a long, long time and I can certainly understand that he wants to take a step back and have more time for his family and things like that.
I don’t know who will replace him, but he’s a leader, and he won’t appoint someone who isn’t capable of doing the job, and he won’t be at the top and he won’t be prepared for it. He will find the right people and that is why we will succeed, because he has found the right people and puts them in a position where they can shine as much as possible.
He just gave every member of this team the chance to be the best they could be. He will find someone who can take responsibility and move forward, but it is not just one person. This team does not consist of one person, but of a team of several people. Toto doesn’t build a car, it’s real teamwork, but I support him in everything he does to get ahead.
Although Wolff did not disclose his plans for 2021, he stated that they had already been developed internally.
Mercedes and I are very clear, he added. It’s all about putting the pen on paper at the right time. I was also focused on bringing these championships home and it was a mistake to spend days with lawyers when I was so focused on what was happening on the track.
Lewis and I are a lot alike here. It was just a mistake to sit down before the end of the championship. The time will come when the decision to organize the drivers championship will be made and we have a few months for the first race in Australia.