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Hamilton backtracks on Wolff comments

NEWS STORY
28/06/2019

While Toto Wolff is playing down talk of him being lined up for Chase Carey's job when the American's contract comes to an end next year, there is clearly more to it than paddock speculation.

However, Lewis Hamilton still caused a stir last week in France when he said that the new F1 supremo should not have links to a team, citing the example of former Ferrari team boss, Jean Todt who subsequently became president of the FIA.

Speaking in Spielberg as the Austrian Grand Prix weekend got underway, Hamilton admitted to feeling "conflicted" over last weekend's comments.

"I've been a bit conflicted the last few days after Sunday night," he told reporters. "I haven't spoken to Toto or to Jean but I've got a great relationship with Jean.

"When we did this meeting at the FIA he was so welcoming to us as drivers, to the GPDA and really took on board," he continued. "I think he's done a great job since he's been in position.

"I'm sure someone else will need to take that role and I was thinking after the race, the best person I know for managing a business, I don't know anybody else better than Toto. So I felt a bit conflicted because I made a comment but I don't feel like I probably got out exactly what I was meaning.

"Over these past couple of days I was thinking to myself, you know, bringing someone in that doesn't know much about Formula 1 is not necessarily the right decision and if you look at people like Toto for example, he's been in two different teams, he's also been in a different business before.

"If you could see how this company is managed from the top down I don't know how he does it," he said of Wolff's management of Mercedes. "I could never do his job and it's a good thing he could never do my job as well!

"I'm fascinated by how people manage businesses and how you find people, people management, putting people in the right position," the Briton admitted. "I don't know anyone else that is able to do as good a job as him in that respect.

"I obviously know people from outside in different businesses, but even those I don't think do as good a job as him. But that's because I'm within the organisation and I see it first-hand.

"I think Toto could do a pretty special job. Would it be better? I do believe it would be better, but that's just from the experience of working in this organisation and seeing it improve drastically since I've been in the team."

Thing is, if what Pitpass is hearing is correct, Wolff wouldn't be the only change at the top. Indeed, were the sport to be sold to an interested bidder, Wolff would almost certainly be partnered by another man with plenty of experience of management... and F1.

Check out our Friday gallery from Spielberg, here.

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