Mercedes boss Toto Wolff is confident that the conditions ideal conditions are in place to keep out of contract Lewis Hamilton with the team beyond this year but he is also wary of the allure Ferrari has for Formula 1 drivers.
Wolff told the Daily Mail, “Lewis is the best driver of the modern generation. So of course, I’d like to keep him with us for as long as possible.”
“But I think he has at least one more contract in him after this next one and Ferrari remains an attraction for every driver.”
“He is happy. Our relationship has gone from strength to strength. But of course, during a season things can become tenser.”
Mercedes have dominated Formula 1 for the last four years – winning eight titles during that period – but it is clear that nothing is taken for granted by Wolff, “Even though I’m afraid to say it because I’m superstitious, I feel better now than last season.”
“We had a solid testing. Last year our car was a bit unpredictable but this year she did what we expected. She appears to be less of a diva. We wanted to keep the character traits of the beautiful lady but not have her as capricious.”
“It seems almost surreal to think what we’ve achieved in the last four years. But every year is like climbing Mount Everest and at the start of the season I feel myself in base camp,” added Wolff.
Hamilton, who has only ever driven with Mercedes power since he made his grand prix debut in 2007, is expected to ink a new deal with Mercedes said to be worth $50-million per year.
Although the reigning world champion has yet to put pen to paper, the paddock consensus is that he will sign a new two-year deal shortly with his team.
However, as Wolff says there is always Ferrari…
Big Question: How likely is it the Lewis will move to Ferrari at some point before he retires?