Toto Wolff is convinced t hat Sebastian Vettel could be an important marketing tool”for British sports car manufacturer Aston Martin, where he acquired shares of converted 42 million euro in April. At the same time, the Mercedes team leader stresses that he is not involved in the negotiations between the Racing Point leadership and the four-time Formula One World Champion.
“I am not involved in any talks between Lawrence Stroll, Otmar (Szafnauer, Racing Point team leader; Amen. d. Red.) and Sebastian,”says Wolff. My shares in the car company have nothing to do with the Formula One team.”
You have to understand: Wolff is a shareholder in the sports car manufacturer Aston Martin. Racing Point will start from 2021 as an Aston Martin team in formula 1. But the sports car manufacturer Aston Martin and the Formula One team Racing Point do not share the same ownership structure.
Admittedly, Canadian businessman Lawrence Stroll is involved with his Yew Tree consortium at both Aston Martin and Racing Point. But Racing Point doesn’t belong to Aston Martin. If the team acts as a workshop team, this happens in the course of a license agreement between Aston Martin and Racing Point which allows the team to use the brand (free of charge).
Wolff would welcome Vettel at Aston Martin
In this respect Wolff of paper format has no right to participate in the selection of racing point at all. Nevertheless, he has an opinion and it reads: “Sebastian is a four-time world champion who brings a lot of speed and technical experience. And it would be an important marketing tool for Aston Martin.”
The suspicion is close that Wolff may have made contact between Stroll and Vettel. According to information provided by’Motorsport-Total.com’, two meetings have so far taken place at Stroll in Gstaad and a fairly concrete contract offer, which Vettel, if he wishes, only has to sign.
But Wolff denies the question of any mediation activity when he says: “I know Sebastian well, of course, And I’ve met him a couple of times on social occasions. And Vettel also emphasizes: “Everyone knows everyone in Paddock anyway. It doesn’t take any initiative to get in touch with anyone.”
Wolff makes it clear: Stroll decides about the drivers
Since Wolff apparently doesn’t intend to interfere in the decisions at Racing Point, despite his friendship and business relationship with Stroll:”Ultimately”, the Mercedes team leader makes clear, “it is Lawrence’s decision which pair is best for his racing team.”
Interesting detail at the edge: Sergio Perez describes Wolff as “a very valuable part of the team. He was always a good driver, a well-known size for Racing Point.”The version that Vettel could take over the cockpit of Lance Stroll, the son of the team manager, should he really come to Racing Point, Wolff does not even mention.
At Mercedes there will probably be no place for Vettel. Daimler Group Manager Ola Kaleninius has already signalled that extending the contract with Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas is only a formal matter. Now Chief of Engineering James Allison is also providing a strong indication that the pair of drivers will remain as they are.
“Why should we want another pair?”, he says. “Why should we want another pair?” They have achieved such strong results, everyone can see the respect between the two, and many others are jealous of their achievements in the boxing alley. Why should we want to give up something that works so well for something that might be a small chance but could also go wrong?”