Toto Wolff: “We already know what we have in Lewis”

© Paul Ripke for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff talks about Mercedes’ future driver pairings and Lewis Hamilton’s relationship with George Russell.

In an interview with Austrian newspaper Sport 24, Toto Wolff was asked if Lewis Hamilton’s amazing performance at the 2021 Bahrain Grand Prix justifies his huge salary, especially considering he managed to beat Max Verstappen in an inferior car.

“We already know what we have in Lewis. He can drive a car,” Wolff was blunt.

The paper also brought up a rumour that Lewis Hamilton stopped talking to George Russell, after the young Briton replaced him at the 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix. The rumour was started after George Russell stated he hasn’t talked to Lewis since the race, which was then taken out of context by the media.

The reality is that the two drivers never kept in regular contact and so there is nothing peculiar about them not having the opportunity to speak to each other yet, especially considering drivers still have to follow strict COVID-19 protocols.

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“I’m hearing this for the first time,” said Wolff.

“But the emotional state of my drivers is the least of my worries. But I can imagine that [could happen] because the competition between the two is very strong.

“The great ones can feel it when a good guy is coming along. And George is the next generation.”

The Austrian was also asked about McLaren boss Zak Brown saying he believes Mercedes’ 2022 lineup will consist of George Russell and Max Verstappen. Wolff dismissed the whole thing.

“Brown is like Christian Horner [Red Bull team boss], they just spread sh*t. I think Zak wanted to stick it to Christian with it.

“I don’t care,” concluded Wolff.

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