Wolff slams ‘Mercedes to quit’ rumours

Jul.31 (GMM) Toto Wolff has slammed reports Mercedes intends to suddenly quit formula one at the end of 2018.

A leading specialist outlet had reported the news that in the wake of the German giant’s title successes in the new ‘power unit’ era, Mercedes will pull out altogether after the 2018 season.

But Speed Week quotes team chief Wolff as saying at Hockenheim that the reports “border on idiocy”.

“This is pure nonsense,” he added.

And Wolff was also quoted by Germany’s Auto Bild as saying: “This rumour must have come from Mars.”

What the Austrian would admit at Hockenheim is his disdain for the never-ending controversy about ‘track limits’, with drivers penalised for creeping too far beyond the white lines and kerbs that delineate the track.

“I say ‘Let the drivers go!’ If they are pushing the limits over the kerbs, it just makes for thrilling TV pictures.

“My personal preference is that if a driver is off the track then he is stuck in a gravel bed or in the wall. But if we have asphalt there, then it is just the nature of the drivers to use it.

“Like this, we cannot be surprised if we have fewer and fewer spectators,” he added.

Meanwhile, Wolff revealed that world champion Lewis Hamilton will shortly take a penalty for having to go beyond his allocation of engines for the season.

“We are thinking Spa or Monza,” he revealed.

“It also depends on upgrades to the engine, as it doesn’t make much sense to give him a new engine and then a race later we being a more powerful specification,” Wolff added.

“That would be an advantage for Nico, so the decision has not been taken yet,” he said.

And Wolff said he is not too worried that Hamilton and pole sitter Nico Rosberg will embarrass Mercedes at home by crashing together on Sunday.

“We have made clear to our drivers what happens to them should they again behave as in Spain or Austria,” he insisted.

Related News

  • 13/01/2016 F1 budget worth every cent and more – Wolff Jan.13 (GMM) Mercedes has no thoughts whatsoever about reassessing its commitment to formula one. The German carmaker left McLaren to become its own works team at the start of the […]
  • 31/01/2018 Lauda denies scaling back F1 involvement Jan.31 (GMM) Niki Lauda has denied that he is beginning to pull away from formula one. Throughout the team's ultra-successful 'power unit' era, the F1 legend has been Mercedes' F1 […]
  • 15/07/2015 German broadcasters keen to keep F1 Jul.15 (GMM) F1's German TV broadcasters insist they remain keen to keep the sport on television. With the German grand prix missing in 2015, it has been rumoured that dwindling TV […]
  • 27/11/2018 Wolff questions Halo after Hulkenberg roll Nov.27 (GMM) Toto Wolff has criticised Halo in the wake of Nico Hulkenberg's rollover crash in Abu Dhabi. Renault driver Hulkenberg was not able to immediately escape from his car during […]
  • 11/04/2016 2017 rules could fail at Pirelli hurdle – report Apr.11 (GMM) F1's radical rules changes for 2017 may stumble at the last hurdle, Germany's Auto Motor und Sport reports. Earlier, it emerged that eight of the 11 active teams actually […]
  • 10/03/2016 Wolff sells last shares in Williams team Mar.10 (GMM) Toto Wolff has severed his last ties to the Williams team. The Austrian entered F1 in 2009 when he bought into the British team and became a director. He left in 2013 when […]
  • 25/03/2018 Wolff eases ‘pressure’ after Bottas crash Mar.25 (GMM) Toto Wolff says he will try to ease the psychological blow suffered by Valterri Bottas following his qualifying crash in Melbourne. Bottas' season got off to the worst […]
  • 21/06/2017 Berger’s nephew to make F1 test debut Jun.21 (GMM) Gerhard Berger's nephew is set to take a big leap forward in his ambitions to race in F1. 22-year-old Lucas Auer, whose mother is F1 legend Berger's sister Claudia, is a […]
  • 19/12/2015 Wolff says he is still friends with Lauda Dec.19 (GMM) Toto Wolff has rejected speculation he and Niki Lauda no longer get along. The rumours had spread around the paddock towards the end of Mercedes' dominant 2015 campaign, but […]
  • 05/07/2016 Hamilton trashed room in Baku – Lauda Jul.5 (GMM) World champion Lewis Hamilton destroyed a hospitality room after crashing in Baku qualifying. F1 legend and Mercedes team chairman Niki Lauda made the revelation on Austrian […]