Wolff Downplays Lauda Comments about Vettel/Mercedes Talks


Toto Wolff says no official talks took place between Mercedes and Sebastian Vettel about a possible drive - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

No official discussions took place between the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team and Sebastian Vettel about a possible drive with the team, according to team boss Toto Wolff, contradicting the earlier comments by Niki Lauda.

Lauda was quoted earlier in the weekend on Sky F1 that brief discussions took place between team and driver about a move to Mercedes before the German was re-signed to the Scuderia Ferrari squad for a further three seasons, but Wolff insists everything that was said was in an informal chat between Vettel and Lauda and nothing official was ever brought up.

“There were zero discussions with Sebastian around a contract between him and Mercedes,” said Wolff on Saturday at Spa-Francorchamps.

“I don’t know what Niki was asked, but at the end of the day you cross each other out there in the paddock, and sometimes you’re like, ‘What are you doing? What’s happening?’ No discussion did take place, zero confusion.”

“Because Niki has a chat over coffee with Sebastian down there and says, ‘By the way what are you doing the next three years?’ And Sebastian says, ‘Well, I’m thinking about it.’ They had a conversation.

“I think the exchange and communication is important, and Niki is our ambassador in that sense, and this might have happened around then. But there was no discussion.”