Lewis Hamilton on difficult season for Mercedes in November
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Toto Wolff has claimed Lewis Hamilton’s deal will be renewed despite rumours contract talks have stalled. The Mercedes boss has previously claimed a new agreement would be signed over the winter but stressed there was “no firm deadline” to put pen to paper.
Wolff explained: “Well, the job list is pretty long in what is needed to be done. But certainly, Lewis’ contract is one of the topics that we will tackle over the winter. But there is no firm deadline.” Wolff replied “absolutely” when pushed on how certain he was that Hamilton would remain with the team.
He added: “Lewis is part of the team and the team is part of Lewis. There is no reason to not continue. I think one of his strengths is that he is always hungry. He is a great sportsman but he is also someone who is extremely driven and determined. He is always eager.”
Wolff’s past comments help cool speculation that talks have broken down between Hamilton and the Silver Arrows.
When asked whether details on a new deal were close, Hamilton admitted talks had not even begun. However, he stressed the gruelling 23-race calendar was a major reason for the lack of inroads.
He told Bild: “We haven’t started yet. So far, there has been no time for this, we were on the road.” Hamilton’s current deal expires at the end of the 2023 season but the Briton has accepted he would be looking to stay.
The 38-year-old previously claimed he would walk away from F1 before his 40s but appears to have made a U-turn.
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The seven-time champion recently revealed any new contract will be a ‘multi-year’ deal while Wolff stressed Hamilton could stay for another five years. Hamilton explained: “I’m not putting a limit on it to be honest. I’m planning to do a multi-year deal with my team.
“I really, really don’t know what the next five years [hold]. I think we’re still trying to work on that… I want to continue, I think there’s more stuff for us to achieve together so I want to be here longer.” Wolff has previously suggested Hamilton’s next contract will include details about life away from F1 once he hangs up the helmet.
The Austrian commented: “He’s much more than a driver to us now. And although we’re not talking about a career end, it’s also important to speak about his role as an ambassador for Mercedes and the many sponsors we have and the implication he can have in our wider universe.”
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