Toto Wolff says he regularly communicate with Frederic Vasseur and feels he will be good with Lewis Hamilton in F1 2025.
The move from Mercedes to Ferrari of Hamilton did surprise Wolff certainly. And that too it came from the two close friends he has in F1. Everyone knows the bond he shares with the Brit, but he also has a good one with Vasseur and are regularly in touch.
Despite that, neither of them naturally told Wolff about the ongoing talks behind the scenes. He doesn’t have a problem as it is purely business and he reckons Hamilton will do well under Vasseur, considering they know each other since the junior days.
“I have great respect for Fred,” said Wolff to media. “Not only as a racing manager but also as a long-time friend. But when he took the role in Ferrari, it was clear that he needs to do the best he can for Ferrari and use every opportunity in order to do that. So there is no bad feeling towards Fred trying to get the best the best employees, the best drivers.
“So that has no effect on the relationship. It is a tough competition. It is a cutthroat environment. And as much as I try to do the best for our group, he will do that for Ferrari. [We talk] numerous times. We are coordinated on our communications. I speak to him multiple times every week. It’s a little bit like rugby.
“We punch each other in the nose but we are able to get off the pitch and have a respectful relationship. I have no doubt that Fred will we be able to have a very good relationship with Lewis as his boss. No doubt about that. They’ve known each other for more than 20 years, he’s raced in ART. Fred understands racing driver’s minds.
“He does things very differently to me. But they’re very successful, like his track record shows,” summed up Wolff, who also clarified that his contract extension with Mercedes wouldn’t have affected in any way even with Hamilton’s decision. The Austrian would have committed to a new deal either way and he is determined of success.
“No, it wouldn’t have changed that,” clarified Wolff. “Whatever role in the in the team, or whatever title you may give it, I’m going to be there in the future, so it was a no-brainer to continue in an executive role. You can call it CEO, Managing Director, Chairman or team principal. So, the easiest way was to stick with what we have.
“It wouldn’t have affected me because I’m so proud in being part of this Mercedes Formula One team that carries this huge legacy of the star and racing history, and we’re going to write more history in the future about the Mercedes Formula One team. And that is what I aim to do with everyone in the team and with everybody in Stuttgart and therefore, as much as this journey is so special, we have 10 or 20 or more years before being overrun by a bus to have more success,” summed up Wolff.
Here’s Lewis Hamilton with his first thoughts on departure
Here’s Toto Wolff on how it all panned out with Lewis Hamilton
Here’s Mercedes announcing Lewis Hamilton’s departure
Here’s Lewis Hamilton on 2023 being emotionally draining
Here’s Mercedes on being impressed by George Russell
Here’s Toto Wolff on seeing F1 numbers not declining even with Red Bull dominance
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