‘Nothing else’: Toto Wolff provides Lewis Hamilton contract update

George Russell outscored Lewis Hamilton last season and has outqualified his teammate in every race of 2023 so far.

Lewis Hamilton’s future at Mercedes, and in Formula 1, is still in the air, as he is yet to sign an extension to his contract which expires at the end of the 2023 season.

Discussing his plans, both Hamilton and Mercedes seem confident that the seven-time world champion will remain at the team past this year, as he continues to target a record eighth-world title.

“I see myself with Mercedes until my last days, to be honest. I have amazing allies within the team, and great relationships here,” Hamilton said earlier this year.

“I just know where we are with Lewis and George [Russell] – nothing else is relevant,” Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff stated.

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“We’re talking when we want to do it and how, but we just need to change some terms – the dates, basically. I am absolutely confident [Hamilton will stay],” he added.

However, as contract negotiations roll on, questions have been raised over whether Mercedes needs to renew their deal with Hamilton, especially given the size of his paycheck.

Hamilton’s place at the team has been rocked by the arrival of Russell last season, who outscored his teammate in his first season at Mercedes.

So far, in 2023, Russell has outqualified Hamilton, almost taking pole position in Australia with a time that rivalled the impressive pace of Max Verstappen’s Red Bull.

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While having two top tier stars fighting it out for position is ideal for Mercedes, especially when they are at the front of the grid, as was seen in Australia, it’s a challenge for Hamilton’s position as the team’s number one driver.

It’s not clear who Mercedes might pick as Hamilton’s replacement should he step away from the team, although it’s been hinted that the Silver Arrows are keen to sign McLaren’s Lando Norris should a space open up.

Wolff has also raised the possibility of promoting Mick Schumacher, currently a reserve driver at Mercedes, to a seat on the grid if either Hamilton or Russell is not available to race.