opened up about discussions with Ferrari
's team principal, Fred Vasseur, after the poaching of Lewis Hamilton
Toto Wolff has praised his honest and open relationship with Lewis Hamilton numerous times. However, the recent deal between the 39-year-old and Ferrari went through behind the back of the Mercedes
What's more, it was suggested that Ferrari's team principal, Fred Vasseur, who had a great relationship with Wolff, was one of the primary reasons behind Hamilton's decision to join Ferrari. Toto Wolff told the media:
"I have great respect for Fred, not only as a racing manager, but also as a long-time friend. But when he took the role in Ferrari, it was clear that he needs to do the best he can for Ferrari and use every opportunity in order to do that."
Even though Vasseur took one of Mercedes's greatest assets, Wolff surprisingly suggests he isn't mad at the Scuderia team principal:
"So, there is no bad feeling towards Fred trying to get the best employees, the best drivers. So that has no effect on the relationship."
The Austrian understands that every team principal's priority is to do what is best for their team, even if it goes against friendship.
"It is a tough competition. It is a cut-throat environment. And as much as I try to do the best for our group, he will do that for Ferrari."
Asked whether he talked to the Frenchman ever since he found out that the seven-time World Champion would be leaving his team for Ferrari in 2025
, Wolff responded:
"Yeah, numerous times. We’re coordinated on our communications, and I speak to him multiple times every week. And you know, it’s a little bit like rugby, we punch each other in the nose, but we are able to get off the pitch and have a respectful relationship."