Updated March 11th, 2024 at 12:12 IST

'I would love to have him': Toto Wolff does not rules out Verstappen as a Lewis Hamilton replacement

Mercedes AMG Team Principal Toto Wolff certainly thinks about bringing in Max Verstappen as a potential Lewis Hamilton replacement in the F1 team.

Reported by: Pavitra Shome
Red Bull driver Max Verstappen celebrates after winning the Formula One Saudi Arabian Grand Prix at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit | Image: AP
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Mercedes' aim to reach momentous heights went through a shake-up as Lewis Hamilton will move to Ferrari in the 2025 season. The Silver Arrows F1 Team will be without the face of the team, which will be a huge void. Lewis will stay in the team for the 2024 season, and Toto Wolff needs to figure out a replacement as they move ahead. Amid the turbulent start to the season, several drivers could be on the list. But one name significantly stands out, which is Max Verstappen. The Red Bull star could be on the way out from the team, and Wolff loves the idea of having him on the team.

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Toto Wolff admires the idea of having Max Verstappen in the Mercedes F1 squad

Though Verstappen has a contract with Red Bull that keeps him affiliated with the team until the end of 2028, there has been a lot of talk lately over the driver market and the possibility that he could seek a race somewhere else. Toto Wolff, the principal of Mercedes Team, expressed his desire to have Max Verstappen join the team if the Dutchman was interested. However, Wolff also mentioned that the Silver Arrows' current goal is to refine their car before making any long-term plans.

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"I'd love to have him. But first, we need to sort out our car. I think we owe it to our drivers, George [Russell] and Lewis, to improve the car and give them equipment that is good before dreaming about the future next year," Wolff said as quoted by Formula 1. 

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen celebrates with Red Bull team principal Christian Horner after winning the Formula One Saudi Arabian Grand Prix at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit | Image: AP

"I think we are going to wait. We have a few interesting options, and the more we can assess how the season pans out, young drivers with us against slightly older ones - that's not going to be decision which we want to take in the next few weeks, it's rather a few months depending on where it goes," the Mercedes AMG F1 Team Principal added.

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Toto Wolff acknowledged that Verstappen must make this choice, and no team on the list would attempt to go nuts to have him in their vehicle.

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Published March 11th, 2024 at 12:12 IST