While we spent the off-season speculating about Lewis Hamilton’s future in Formula 1, it appears all the Ferrari talk with Toto Wolff in tow was all well off the mark.
The pair sat down with Sky F1 to address the elephant in the room, namely Hamilton’s future with the team and his contract beyond the end of this season.
Hamilton was first off, to sum up the situation, “We haven’t sat down and talked yet. It’s crazy because there’s all these talks in the media and everything. I have a certain approach normally in the sense that I don’t stress. I trust Toto and we have that trust between us.
“We have told each other basically what our goals are, and what our aims are, and our commitments and so I don’t ever feel there’s necessarily always a rush. But sometimes Toto’s like ‘is everything ok?’ So we always keep the channel open and I’m sure in the near future we’ll start to sit down. But I don’t feel stressed.”
Team boss Wolff confirmed, “I texted Lewis the other day and [said] I’m reading all these comments in the press about our negotiations and that Lewis is asking for so much money – we have never talked about it! It’s all made up.
“Then I said maybe we should sit down one day and have the chat. But I think I know so well where he’s going to go, you know where I am, it’s about finding a day where we spend a few hours together. That’s what we’ve done in the past.”
During the off-season, contact between Ferrari president John Elkann and Lewis at a social function was widely reported and not denied by either party. This was interpreted as a ‘discussion/negotiation’ of sorts and, of course, the question was asked.
“I think that’s like a short-term kind of thing,” explained the six-time F1 World Champion with regards to ending his career at Maranello.
“If you look at all drivers who have driven for Ferrari, obviously it’s an incredible team and obviously the car’s always beautiful red. I have got red on my helmet. Red is the colour of passion or love or whatever you want say.
“But what Mercedes have done for all their drivers – even Sir Stirling Moss is still a part of the team – they honour that and you become a part of a legacy and a life-long partner, which I think is super appealing,” added Lewis.