Mercedes

Akshita Patel

“He Doesn’t Need George’s Approval,” F1 Pundit Expects Toto Wolff To Be Clever While Seeking Lewis Hamilton’s Replacement At Mercedes!

Lewis Hamilton has officially bid goodbye to his home, Mercedes, after 11 years of prolonged and historic association. For the sake of his childhood dream, the British driver will don the reds to drive a Ferrari in 2025. Having said that, Silver Arrows team principal Toto Wolff is caught in the eye of the storm following Lewis’ decision.

He signed a two-year extension contract with Lewis Hamilton five months ago. And was planning on an ideal route to produce an awe-inspiring comeback until Hamilton stumped him last week. Meanwhile, regardless of the heartbreak, F1 pundit Lawrence Barretto trusts Toto to do the right thing while seeking a replacement for the seven-time world champion.

   

“I Think Toto Wolff Will Be Clever Who He Puts In Second Seat,” Lawrence Barretto

Mercedes
Credit: REUTERS

With Lewis Hamilton’s abrupt departure to Ferrari, George Russell will take over the reins as the new team leader at Mercedes. However, as far as the second seat is concerned, F1 pundit Lawrence Barretto does not believe Russell will have much say in it. Lawrence feels the young British driver is still new to the team. Thus, team principal Toto Wolff would not feel the need to keep him in the loop or seek his opinion. Also, the pundit believes Wolff has always been the ultimate boss when it comes to calling the shots. He has managed the team for a decade and has plenty of experience in dealing with adversities.

“I think he’ll back himself to make those right calls,” said Lawrence Barretto. Additionally, the F1 pundit says it’s important Toto Wolff brings a strong driver for the second seat to keep George Russell on his toes. A healthy competition will only elevate Russell’s growth as a mature F1 driver. “I think he’ll be quite clever who he puts in that second seat with an eye of bringing the very best out of George,” added Barretto. Having said that, speaking of replacements, Fernando Alonso and Carlos Sainz have remained linked to Mercedes. However, Daniel Ricciardo and Alex Albon are off the table as they remain committed to Red Bull and Williams, respectively. Besides this, Mercedes’s options remain limited per se. Thus, Toto Wolff has a big task up his sleeves this coming season.

Red Bull Rules Out Daniel Ricciardo’s Move To Mercedes

Red Bull
Getty Images/Red Bull Content Pool

Meanwhile, Daniel Ricciardo’s name also surfaced as a potential Lewis Hamilton replacement at Mercedes. Ricciardo, who joined as Red Bull’s reserve driver ahead of the 2023 season, moved to sister team AlphaTauri mid-season. He has been keen on a comeback with a top team for the longest time. However, Red Bull seats are currently unavailable.

Regardless, Red Bull has shut doors for Daniel Ricciardo with respect to a potential move to Mercedes. The drink-based outfit’s senior motorsport advisor, Helmut Marko, said the Australian driver has a long-term commitment with Red Bull. As of now, he is under the team’s control and unavailable to make a switch to any other F1 team.

Stay tuned to Sports News International for more such news and updates about Mercedes and your favorite F1 team.