TOTO WOLFF has opened up on Lewis Hamilton’s new Mercedes contract and insisted he never doubted the world champion would sign it.
Talks between the two rumbled on for much longer than anticipated with rumours that Hamilton was holding out for more money and a share of the team’s TV money.
Lewis Hamilton has agreed a ten-month deal with Mercedes for the 2021 seasonCredit: Getty Images – Getty
But Wolff has rubbished those suggestions and insisted that he has NOT requested a veto inserted into his contract that would block Merc moving for Max Verstappen.
He said: “This time, getting the contract signed was more complex because we could not see each other, but there were not huge gaps or discrepancies from how we would see this new contract.
“Overall it was a few weeks that we spent on video conferencing, seeing each other every few days and then obviously the lawyers had to put that down into a contract.
“But no, there was not a moment where we thought he would not sign. There was never a moment where he doubted.
“And on these specific clauses that were out there in the media, I don’t know where it came from because none of it is true.
“I read about this and found it interesting the perspectives but the truth is there was not a discussion about any driver-specific clause he has never asked for that in the last eight years and it is a team decision.
“And the other clause about the revenue split or share, came out of nowhere.
“That rumour was baseless too so none of that was every part of our discussions.”
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Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has stated he was never in doubt Hamilton would agree a contract extensionCredit: PA:Press Association
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While he would not confirm the £40million figure Hamilton is reportedly being paid, Wolff says the amount of money Hamilton was commanding was never an issue.
He added: “It is the third contract that we have been discussing so it is not as though we needed to start from scratch, but it is an important contract.
“It is important because of this season and how we want to position ourselves from 2022 onwards and how is his thinking.
“Lewis has always recognised that this is a difficult period. Difficult in the sense it is difficult for everybody from a health point of view.
“There are much more important topics than Formula One racing and also the auto industry is in a transformation phase, so the money topic wasn’t a sticking point.”