Toto Wolff clarifies rumour which could be a massive boost to Lewis Hamilton

Mercedes AMG chief technical officer James Allison joined the Silver Arrows in 2017.

Following recent speculation that James Allison was set to re-join the Mercedes F1 Team, Toto Wolff has clarified that the German manufacturer’s chief technical officer will not be returning to the Brackley-based team, due to his roles elsewhere.

Allison was promoted to chief technical officer at Mercedes AMG in 2021, with him having initially joined the F1 team in 2017.

He held the same position for the INEOS Britannia Americas Cup team, with INEOS, of course, being a third owner of Mercedes F1.

Given his role, Allison does still feature in key discussions on the F1 side of things; however, he won’t be making a full return to the Silver Arrows.

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“He is not involved,” Wolff clarified.

“He plays an active role when long-term team strategies are discussed, but nowadays he devotes his time to other activities such as the America’s Cup project and other programmes aimed at innovation.”

With the start of Mercedes’ 2023 F1 season having been mixed, some wondered if Allison returning to the F1 team would be in a bid to push the team closer to Red Bull.

Mercedes endured a disappointing start to the year in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, before claiming a podium in Australia, thanks to Lewis Hamilton.

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The Brackley-based team did look significantly better at the Albert Park Circuit, although, Hamilton has admitted that it could be due to “track-specific” reasons.

A new concept is set to be introduced at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix regardless, with the Germans not being happy with the W14 as it stands.

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Whilst Wolff recognises that Allison could help the team suddenly improve, the Austrian doesn’t want it all to rely around a single person, with the Mercedes team principal instead wanting to focus on “finding” the correct candidates to fill “the roles we need” to close the gap to Red Bull.

“James is still very important to our organisation,” Wolff stated.

“But in terms of the difficulties we have, I don’t think it’s a question of one person, as much as finding more of the right people in the roles we need.”