Wolff – fighter Hamilton will not walk out on Mercedes

Toto Wolff sees Lewis Hamilton as a fighter who will not walk out on Mercedes

Toto Wolff sees Lewis Hamilton as a fighter who will not walk out on Mercedes

Toto Wolff is convinced Lewis Hamilton will stand and fight to make Mercedes competitive again rather than quitting F1 or for another team at the end of the season.

Hamilton is in the final year of his current contract with a team that has helped him win six of his seven Formula 1 titles.

Although early negotiations have commenced between Hamilton and Wolff over another extension, there remain question marks over whether the 38-year-old will commit given the current level of performance on track.

Following qualifying for the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix at the weekend, Hamilton described himself as “disconnected” and “at a loss” with the W14. That is due to the fact he requires greater stability at the rear that will allow him to push.

There is a danger for Wolff this latest Hamilton contract saga will drag on should the Briton decide to wait and see whether he can be provided with a car that will allow him to fight for race wins again, and ultimately, an eighth F1 title.

But Wolff said: “He’s a fighter, and so are we. If the fight is on, you stay and you fight. You don’t throw the towel in.

“I think that’s how we all are in the team, and that’s why I have no reason to believe that he’s going to walk away from it.”

Hamilton “trying to be patient” with Mercedes

Whilst such comments appear to be testing Hamilton’s determination and resolve, Wolff did state earlier in the weekend he would not be a grouch if his driver looked elsewhere after a couple of years without a winning car.

For his part, Hamilton also insisted he is no quitter.

Asked about Wolff’s comments, Hamilton replied: “Well, I’m not focused on that.

“I love this team and I’m so grateful to everyone that’s been on the journey with me with this team.

“I don’t visualise being anywhere else, and I don’t see myself quitting. I don’t feel like I’m a quitter.”

Hamilton, however, then added: “But I wouldn’t say that it’s giving me a lot. You know, I’ve been there, done that, and bought the t-shirt many times.

“I am trying to be patient and work with the team to get us to a good place, and so that’s all I can say right now. I’m not planning on going anywhere.”

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