Toto Wolff responds to the latest Lewis Hamilton to Ferrari ‘rumour’

Michelle Foster
Lewis Hamilton with his head down. Miami May 2023.

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton walks away after being knocked out of qualifying. Miami May 2023.

Toto Wolff has rubbished claims that Lewis Hamilton could join Ferrari on a £40 million-per-season deal with the Mercedes motorsport boss, saying “none of this is true”.

Despite Wolff saying back in January that he would have Hamilton locked into a new contract for 2024 before the winter was over, the seven-time World Champion has yet to put pen to paper on a new deal.

This, according to past F1 World Champions, is because he’s waiting to see whether or not Mercedes can recover from their disappointing start to the season with that dependent on Monaco’s “completely revamped” car.

It’s led to speculation that Ferrari could make a play for the seven-time World Champion, with the Daily Mail reporting that Ferrari are preparing to offer Hamilton a contract worth in the region of £40 million to tempt him into swapping Brackley for Maranello.

And it’s Ferrari president John Elkann who is the charge in pursuit of the Brit with the Italian set to sacrifice Carlos Sainz if he can persuade Hamilton to join the Scuderia.

Wolff, though, isn’t all worried.

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“These rumours come up every two years when we have to sign a new contract,” he told oe24. “But none of this is true. We discuss normally, without any time pressure.”

But while time and friendship isn’t at stake, the Austrian conceded yet again it’s not nice talking money with friends.

Acknowledging that it wasn’t easy to negotiate finances, “I said that too”, he added: “It’s just uncomfortable that two friends, two blood brothers who have been through thick and thin for ten years, suddenly have to discuss money.”

But, he added: “I’m firmly convinced that we’ll find each other, there’s not a millimetre of doubt for me.

“I can’t imagine anything else. If we give Lewis a competitive car, he will win for a long time. Look at Tom Brady what he was still capable of in his 40s.”

Hamilton himself has said he’d be happy to race into his 50s, and do so with Mercedes.

Calling the Brackley squad “home”, he recently told the Independent: “You can never say never.

“There are people out there like Tom Brady [who retired aged 45]. There are different ways you can train, how you can eat, and your focus.

“The technology in our bodies is shifting, and it is just about the mentality and whether or not you still have the drive to sacrifice the same as you did when you first started, and I do.

“I cannot speak for Fernando [Alonso] but I am hoping for more great fights with him moving forward.”