Toto Wolff details behind-the-scenes complexity to new Lewis Hamilton Mercedes deal

Jamie Woodhouse
Mercedes Toto Wolff and Lewis Hamilton.

Mercedes' Toto Wolff and Lewis Hamilton.

While the contract talks part between Toto Wolff and Lewis Hamilton was handled in an “afternoon on the sofa”, Wolff detailed the extra hoops that must be jumped through.

All the talk from the Mercedes and Hamilton camps is firmly pointing towards Hamilton extending his stay with the team beyond F1 2023, Hamilton even going as far as to say he wants to be Mercedes for life, but still no confirmation has arrived.

The Ferrari rumours have gone quiet in recent weeks after both team and driver firmly shut down any prospect of us seeing Hamilton in Ferrari red, but closure to the situation will only come when Hamilton has a new signed Mercedes contract with his current deal up at the end of the season.

Wolff and Hamilton have both eluded to imminent talks to reach that agreement, which Wolff suggested have now taken place, but with the wait for confirmation ongoing Wolff has lifted the lid on stages of the process behind the scenes which are out of their control, including where all the legal parts are taken care of.

“Obviously, there’s more people involved because there’s Lewis’ management, lawyers on our side and it is never down to me alone,” said Wolff, as per

“But I would say that when it comes to the nitty gritty details – the things that are important – Lewis and I spent an afternoon together in New York sitting on a sofa.

“There wasn’t any beer, but a mineral water.” recommends

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Lewis Hamilton staying with Mercedes a formality

There was a stage earlier in the season where it seemed Hamilton perhaps was losing his patience a little with Mercedes, the team having stumbled out of the blocks for a second season in succession, with Hamilton criticising the team publicly for not following his feedback.

Mercedes decided at that point to write-off their current approach and unveiled their new-look W14 in Monaco, which appears to have sent the team in the right direction, Hamilton having scored P2 and P3 finishes in his most recent outings, closing in on Formula 1’s dominant force Max Verstappen in the process.

The outlook at Mercedes now then has done a complete U-turn and Hamilton is seemingly refreshed, back on top form and chomping at the bit to catch Red Bull, meaning a Mercedes contract extension as he chases that record eighth World Championship is surely, eventually, going to arrive.