Mercedes’ Toto Wolff admittedly ‘surprised’ Lewis Hamilton is switching gears to Ferrari but ‘holds no grudge’ – saimmalik


Formulation One star Lewis Hamilton just lately made the stunning determination to bolt from Mercedes-AMG Petronas in favor of Scuderia Ferrari on the finish of the 2024 season.

On Friday, Mercedes staff principal Toto Wolff made it clear there have been no exhausting emotions over Lewis’ determination. 

Wolff additionally acknowledged he was conscious of the rumors about Lewis’ potential departure however didn’t know till the Formula One star revealed his intentions in a gathering over breakfast earlier this week.

Lewis will be part of Ferrari for the 2025 season after racing for Mercedes for greater than a decade. He received six of his seven championships with the staff.

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Lewis Hamilton of Nice Britain and Mercedes GP Government Director Toto Wolff on stage for the F1 Reside occasion throughout previews forward of the F1 Grand Prix of Australia at Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit March 13, 2019, in Melbourne, Australia. (Clive Mason/Getty Photos)

“The shock was that I’ve heard the rumors a few days earlier however needed to attend for the breakfast we had deliberate, and it was Wednesday morning. And that is when he broke the information,” Wolff stated.

“However, , you could be very easy with me as a result of I’m very easy too. So, as soon as he stated, ‘That is what I’m attempting to do,’ that was the actual fact. I didn’t attempt to persuade him in any other case.”

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Wolff added that he nonetheless considers Hamilton a pal. 

“Sooner or later, we’ll focus on whether or not this might have been executed differently or not, however I maintain no grudge,” Wolff stated. 

Lewis Hamilton celebrates a win

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes staff principal Toto Wolff, proper, have a good time after Hamilton received the race and his seventh world championship on the Formulation One Turkish Grand Prix on the Istanbul Park circuit racetrack in Istanbul Nov. 15, 2020.  (AP Picture/Kenan Asyali, Pool, File)

Hamilton agreed to a multi-year extension with Mercedes in August, however he’s activating a launch clause that enables him to exit after a yr.

Wolff stated the actual fact Hamilton was looking for a brand new problem wasn’t a shock however the timing was. He instructed Hamilton could be “rolling the cube” because the 39-year-old driver seeks one other shot at what could be his eighth F1 title.

“We knew that by signing a short-term contract, it might be of profit for either side. We couldn’t commit for an extended interval, and he’s taking the choice to exit. We completely respect you can change your thoughts. It’s totally different circumstances,” Wolff stated.

Lewis Hamilton gets ready

Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes forward of Formulation 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at Yas Marina Circuit Nov. 26, 2023, in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto by way of Getty Photos)

Hamilton’s has not received a race 2021, when he simply missed out on the title to Max Verstappen on the season finale in Abu Dhabi.

Wolff stated he has no considerations about involving Hamilton with Mercedes’ automotive growth, even with Hamilton as a result of be part of a rival. 

“I don’t have any doubt in Lewis’ integrity by way of sharing info,” Wolff stated.

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Mercedes has been a key supporter of Hamilton’s efforts to enhance variety in Formulation One. In 2021, he and the staff joined collectively to arrange the Ignite initiative to provide extra alternatives for individuals from a various vary of backgrounds seeking to enter careers in areas like motorsports, science and engineering.

The Related Press contributed to this report.

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