F1: Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes to begin contract talks in ‘a few days’, says Toto Wolff

Mercedes are planning to begin contract talks with Lewis Hamilton in the coming days, team boss Toto Wolff has revealed.

Hamilton won a record-equalling seventh Formula One world championship in Turkey at the weekend, and Mercedes are keen to keep the 35-year-old on their books, with his existing deal due to run out next month.

“Flying back from a seventh drivers’ championship, you can’t talk about a contract,” Wolff told the BBC.

“It wouldn’t do justice to the achievement. We’re going to give it a few days, then we are going to talk about it.”

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After Hamilton won Sunday’s Turkish Grand Prix to clinch the title and equal Ferrari legend Michael Schumacher’s seven championships, Wolff jokingly told reporters that Hamilton had “got really more expensive”.

The Austrian added, however, that there will be no rush in extending the British driver’s contract.

“I think more than likely we are looking towards the end of the year,” Wolff said.

“Not that we wouldn’t find time for each other, but I don’t want to put ourselves under pressure to say before [the upcoming races in] Bahrain or before Abu Dhabi we will announce a new contract, because there isn’t any pressure. 

“When it’s done, it’s done.”

When asked on Sunday about contract negotiations, Hamilton said: “We’ve got three weeks in the Middle East, so now it’s a bit more chilled, but I still have three races ahead of me that I want to win. 

“[A new deal is] not done, but we will get it done, I’m sure.”

Mercedes have won the last seven constructors’ and drivers’ titles, and the cars and rules will be substantially the same next year.

Of Hamilton – now Formula One’s most successful driver of all time with a record 94 wins – Wolff said: “He loves racing and the competition, as does the team and myself.

“So, I see us going for more next year, maybe putting another great year on and then obviously we have this tremendous, challenging regulations change for 2022.

“I see us going for a while.”


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