Toto Wolff: Lots of meetings, can't say about the second driver yet

The leaders of Mercedes must make the right decision

by Sead Dedovic
Toto Wolff: Lots of meetings, can't say about the second driver yet
© Clive Rose/Getty Images Sport

Toto Wolff and the leaders of Mercedes are faced with an interesting task: Who will be the driver to succeed Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes' driver? The Briton is joining Ferrari from the next season, so the Mercedes executives must make a careful decision and understand what moves to make. 

The Mercedes boss seems to be most interested in Max Verstappen, currently driving for Red Bull. 

Fans of this sport are not optimistic that it will actually happen, considering how important Verstappen is to Red Bull and what he has been doing in previous seasons. Wolff spoke to the media about rumors of meetings between Mercedes executives and Max. Wolff did not want to give a definite answer when it comes to the future of Mercedes and the vacant position.

"There's always plenty of meetings. I can't really say about the second driver. I think we've talked about the possibilities. I want to be fair to these guys and not make it look like we are playing chess with humans, because we are not doing that."- Toto Wolff said, as quoted by Express.

Wolff confirmed that his team will be patient and wait for their chance. They are aware of what it would mean to have Verstappen on the team. It seems their intention is to give the Dutchman space and time to consider his future, while simultaneously monitoring his performances and contemplating other names. 

Carlos Sainz, a Ferrari driver who must find a new team from the next season, is one of the options. He looks great this season, and if he continues at the same pace until the end of the season, he will be an interesting option for the German team.

“I think we want to take our time, see where Max's thinking goes, and at the same time, monitor the other drivers. Carlos was very strong in Miami again and that's why we are a little bit on an observation mode at the moment."- he continued.

Carlos Sainz
Carlos Sainz© Clive Mason/Getty Images Sport

The Mercedes team principal was quite honest, emphasizing that if he were in Verstappen's place, he wouldn't leave the team, "at least for 2025." However, Wolff believes that Verstappen is a mature driver who can make independent decisions. He had only words of praise for the 26-year-old driver who leads the way in the F1 scene. Wolff believes that the situation could remain the same, and that Verstappen could remain loyal to Red Bull, but the intention is to carefully monitor the situation.

One of the names associated with Red Bull is young Kimi Antonelli. The 17-year-old driver, who is currently part of F2, is increasingly being mentioned as one of the options. Wolff is somewhat tired of rumors regarding the 17-year-old driver, considering it too early to give such a driver a chance. However, if Mercedes runs out of options for the next season, there is a chance that Antonelli will sign for this team. These are still just rumors, and it will be interesting to carefully follow the decisions of the leaders of this team.

It seems that there will always be sparks between Mercedes and Red Bull. Red Bull's executives are not happy with the statements Wolff makes week after week, believing that Toto Wolff should primarily focus on his team rather than on Verstappen and rumors about his future. 

Red Bull chief Oliver Mintzlaff criticized Wolff a few days ago in an interview with Bild, emphasizing that Verstappen is still under contract. Mercedes boss didn't want to stay silent on the statements of the rival chief, emphasizing that he doesn't understand what Mintzlaff even wants to comment on.

The future of Mercedes

Mercedes is far from their true form, and this season has been quite disappointing for them. Although they hoped that this season would be significantly better than the previous one, the situation is not at all optimistic for this German team. 

Toto Wolff hopes that things will change in the coming seasons, ready to return Mercedes to where they belong. 

When your rival dominates in such a way, it is important to carefully consider what moves you need to make to help your team return to winning ways. 

The arrival of Verstappen would certainly be one of the biggest news in the world of F1 in the history of this sport. However, it is still too early to talk about it considering that the Dutchman is focused on respecting his contract and helping Red Bull win the championship. His statements from a few days ago, where he talks about being sure that he will be part of this team in the future, at least in the near future, are a reason for pessimism among Mercedes fans.

Toto Wolff Mercedes