Wolff and Hamilton confident of new deal ‘soon’

Lewis Hamilton has no doubt that he will sign a new contract to extend his stay at Mercedes – and that it could be sealed within the next month.

The 33-year-old’s current contract expires at the end of 2018. However he made it plain that it’s not planning on leaving Brackley anytime soon.

Hamilton explained that talks with team boss Toto Wolff had only recently started since he’d returned from his winter holiday.

“Once I left in December, I was away,” he said at Silverstone during the launch of Mercedes’ new W09 car. “It’s not something I like to do over the phone.

“I didn’t get back until February, so I was away during that time. But we spoke very often, constantly talking to each other about how we are committed to each other.

“Toto knows that I know that there is no one better, so he’s not going to be looking at anyone else. And he knows that I know there is no one better, so I’m not looking anywhere else.

“We’re comfortable and committed to each other,” he stressed. “It’s just about talking out the details.

“Hopefully we’ll have something done before the beginning of the season, before the start of the first race,” he predicted. “But again, we’re just in no rush. There’s no reason to rush anything.

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“There’s no panic. I’m not feeling under pressure of any other drivers being there. Toto and Mercedes have no reason to feel that I’m talking to anyone else.

“In the whole six years I’ve been here I’ve never spoken to another team once,” he revealed. “And I think that really shows my commitment.

“I know that the team has been contacted by other drivers in the past – and probably still do today – and that’s inevitable,” he added. “But we always made it clear in the beginning that if I was to engage and look at my options I woudl inform him.

“And I haven’t needed to, because I haven’t.”

Wolff himself was also relaxed and confident about the state of the contract renewal negotiations with the four-time world champion.

“We’ve had very good discussions, ticking the dots and are expecting to come up with some news soon,” Wolff said. “It is important to cover every angle

“Lewis has been with the team for six years, we are talking about extending that to a very long time.”

However, he was reluctant to put a deadline on when there might be firm news about re-signing Hamilton.

“The minute you put the date out, you are going to be remembered about the date. It doesn’t make any sense to put ourselves under pressure.

“The sooner the better,” he agreed. “A couple of weeks would be a realistic target. Maybe a few weeks.”

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