Wolff: Oscillate between mania and despair in F1

Date published: July 25 2021 - Henry Valantine

Toto Wolff, Mercedes team principal

Toto Wolff has said that Formula 1 brings a wide-ranging emotional rollercoaster, “between mania and despair” depending on performances.

Mercedes were back to winning form at the British Grand Prix last weekend, pulling themselves right back into the fight for the Drivers’ and Constructors’ Championships after Lewis Hamilton’s victory.

With Red Bull looking to retaliate in Hungary after a disappointing day, Wolff urged caution about Mercedes’ chances around the Hungaroring in the next race – particularly with how much can change in a short period of time in Formula 1.

“You can’t assume from the paperwork that we’ll be among the favourites [in Hungary], but of course we’ll stretch where we can to keep the championship open or maybe even get an advantage,” the Mercedes team principal said to RTL.

“It will certainly be much more difficult for us than in Silverstone. But I think we have understood a bit more.

“In our environment in Formula 1, you tend to oscillate a bit between mania and despair. And if you have a bad race, a bad run like we had until Silverstone, then people write us off, and then we win at Silverstone and suddenly you have momentum again.

“I think we as a team just have to stay stable, we have to be aware of our strengths, develop the car further and at the same time stay error-free.”

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The fallout from Hamilton and Max Verstappen’s crash at Silverstone has rumbled on all week and, now there has been time to take account of what happened, Wolff was pragmatic about how perceptions differed up and down the grid.

“We have to accept that everyone has a different opinion,” he said, quoted by RacingNews365.

“Everyone has a different perspective and everyone has to communicate that in their own way. Maybe we would have done it differently, but I don’t see it as criticism. Everyone should do what they think it’s the right thing.”

Helmut Marko was among the most vocal after the accident, suggesting that Hamilton should have been given a race ban for his part in the collision and that the team may consider legal action against Mercedes.

With that in mind, a question came about whether Wolff would like to sit down with his Red Bull counterpart over a glass of wine.

“I’ve never had a glass of wine with Dr. Marko and I can think of a few other people I’d rather have a glass of wine with,” he quipped.