Toto Wolff is currently one of the biggest names in the world of Formula 1. The former Austrian driver entered F1 after buying a stake in William’s racing team in 2009 and was named the team’s executive director in 2012. In 2013, Wolff took a similar role at Mercedes racing as the Silver Arrows kicked off a new era of domination in Formula 1 racing. He brought in Lewis Hamilton to Mercedes during the same year, creating history for the German outfit. 

The Wolff-Hamilton combo helped the Brackley-based outfit become one of the biggest manufacturers and winners in the history of F1. The Silver Arrows have won eight consecutive constructors’ championships since 2014. Lewis Hamilton won six drivers’ championships with the team. Thus, Toto Wolff has been pivotal in turning the fortunes around Mercedes and has been highly involved in taking the sport to the next level over the last decade. So, let us take a look at some of the unknown facts about the Mercedes boss.

Wolff Did Not Get Involved With Racing Until He Was 17

Wolff

Toto Wolff was not exposed to or particularly interested in racing while growing up. However, he took a weekend trip to Amsterdam with his friend before getting his driving license. Luckily, Toto and his friend stopped at Nurburgring, where his friend Phillip Peter was competing in the German F3 championship. After witnessing the racing action that day, Wolff decided that he wanted to become a racing driver at the age of 17.

Toto Used His First Racing Car As A Road Car

After realizing his dream, Wolff decided to follow it and become a racing driver. He combined the savings from Christmas and birthday to get admitted to the Walter Lechner Racing School at the old A1 ring. However, the Austrian could not afford a single-seater car initially and decided to compete at the SEAT Ibiza Cup. He bought a SEAT Ibiza, which he also used as his road car. Toto also worked for Lechner as an instructor in Spielberg for a few years before becoming a frontrunner in the Austrian and German Formula Ford.

Wolff’s Racing Career Ended Due To Financial Difficulties

Wolff

Toto’s single-seater racing career came to an end due to monetary problems. He was able to fight for wins in Formula Ford and the German championship. However, he ran out of money as his sponsor pulled out after the Senna Wendlinger controversy in 1994. After this, he was forced to stop racing.

Niki Lauda & Toto Wolff’s Friendship Goes Beyond Their Mercedes Partnership

Lauda & Wolff

Wolff joined Mercedes at the end of 2012 after resigning from Williams. He joined legendary driver Niki Lauda at the German outfit. It was Toto’s first time working with Lauda. However, the duo had known each other for a while as he had family relations with the Austrian legend. Toto Wolff shared that it took a while for the duo to get along after Daimler decided to team up with Mercedes. Wolff felt he and Lauda had similar strengths and weaknesses. And the partnership finally bore some fruitful results for the team. Toto once said, “Niki not being here is a little bit like having cut a leg off.”

Toto Wolff’s Standout Career Moment

Austrian GP Podium 2014

Wolff considers the 2014 Austrian Grand Prix as one of the most glorious moments of his motorsport career. Mercedes and his former outfit finished in the top four during the race. The two Mercedes drivers finished 1-2 while the two Williams finished third and fourth. Wolff revealed that it is the only trophy he had in his office other than the constructors’ championship.

Spielberg is where Toto started his racing career in the early 90s, and achieving a unique feat at the same track in a completely different role was very special to him. Toto ended 2014 as a stakeholder in both outfits and finished in the first four spots of a Formula One championship race. The Mercedes boss concluded, “That was a moment that was really really special to me.”

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