'Total nonsense!' Toto Wolff blasts claims that relationship with Hamilton is strained

Mercedes AMG F1 team principal, Toto Wolff. Image: TeamTalk
Mercedes AMG F1 team principal, Toto Wolff. Image: TeamTalk

Toto Wolff says he is staying in charge of Mercedes' works Formula 1 team for "the short term".

The Austrian has been linked strongly with Lawrence Stroll's Aston Martin project, amid rumours Wolff has fallen out with new Daimler boss Ola Kallenius.

But he told Osterreich newspaper: "In most of the stories I read about it, people have added one plus one and come up with three."

When asked what his current situation is, Wolff added: "My contract with Mercedes runs until the end of 2020, and we are still in good discussions about what we want to do together. All of this has been pushed into the background by the coronavirus, because we all have bigger problems to solve now - human problems in our companies."

But Wolff has already ruled out becoming Aston Martin CEO, and he also insists: "I am not going to make a strategic investment there either."

Good friends

When pressed on his relationship with billionaire Stroll, though, he said: "Stroll and his team are a big customer of our team. In addition, Lawrence has been a good friend of mine for many years - regardless of our business relationships. Lawrence is becoming chairman of Aston Martin and from this people added one and one and came up with three."

However, the speculation is not likely to stop there - especially as Wolff almost admits to some internal problems behind the scenes.

READ: Is Toto Wolff preparing for a switch to Aston Martin as Chief Executive?

He said: "I'm in my eighth year (at Mercedes) now - I love the sport and this team. However, I am somewhat surprised by the changes that have taken place over the winter and by the behaviour of individual people. This also has to do with my decision on what to do in 2020 and beyond.

"But I am and will remain the head of Mercedes motorsport and in charge of the F1 team, and nothing will change in the short term."

Wolff also rubbished speculation that his relationship with Lewis Hamilton - whose contract also runs out this year - has become strained.

He insisted: "Total nonsense. Our relationship is closer than ever and we talk about our future every day. Everything indicates that we will continue in a similar form to today."

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