amilton, the reigning world champion, is now in his contract’s final year. However, there have been talks regarding his signing of a new deal for a while now. Towards the end of the previous season, Wolff has said that he does not think that Hamilton would unexpectedly leave Mercedes, like Nico Rosberg did after he won the 2016 world championship, and it appears that the discussions have brought about a positive outcome.
“Lewis has become such an important pillar within the team, it is a no-brainer that we continue with each other,” Wolff shared to the official website of Mercedes. “The discussions are ongoing and with a very positive mind-set. It is just a matter of time, when we seal it and put the signature to the document.”
Since Hamilton signed with Mercedes in 2013, he has reveled in one of the most superior spells of any driver in the history of F1, winning three world titles and becoming the leader in the sport’s career pole positions. Mercedes is hoping that this dominance will continue in 2018, but at the same time, welcomes the new campaign with the knowledge that Valtteri Boltas is beginning his own contract year.
The future of Bottas is not too certain – he was in a mixed debut season with the team, and continues on a one-year extension after that. With drivers like Daniel Ricciardo and Mercedes junior Esteban Ocon, Mercedes has a lot of possible options.
Wolff shared what he expects from the current batch of Mercedes junior drivers, “Every year, we set objectives for the boys and they have matched those objectives last year. The bar is rising. If you want to qualify for a Mercedes, you need to be quick, make no mistakes, work well within your team, be respected by your team and energize your team. All of these factors that we try to capture and measure. We will see where they end up in a years’ time.”