Toto Wolff: “Hamilton should have had an eighth world title last year”

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Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff says “everybody knows” that Lewis Hamilton “should have had an eighth world title last year”.

The story of how Lewis Hamilton lost his eighth world title, when race director Michael Masi broke the rules in the final race of the 2021 season, is well known.

Unfortunately, the problems Mercedes is facing in 2022 have so far been preventing Lewis from being able to fight for the title this year.

In an interview with Square Mile, Toto Wolff is very clear in his verdict on what happened in Abu Dhabi last year.

“I think Hamilton should have had an eighth world title last year, everybody knows that,” the Austrian said.

“But now we need to make a car that puts him in the position of going for that eighth title and that is fundamentally my responsibility. But that’s good. I’m in control of that situation.”

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Wolff then explained the radio message he sent out to Lewis at the end of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, when he apologized to the Briton for providing him with a “s**t box” of a car.

“I need to protect him. Because people have started to hit out at him, which is not right. It’s complete nonsense: he’s the greatest driver of all-time. The car is just subpar.

“George has sometimes struggled a bit less because he’s maybe used to driving difficult cars at the back of the grid, but Lewis was unlucky on many occasions. He could have scored another two podiums and then the pendulum would have swung.

“So, it [the apology] is to make sure that everybody comprehends that the car is not performing, and not that the driver is at fault,” Wolff concluded.

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