Toto Wolff addresses Lewis Hamilton's cryptic comments in Monaco

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Toto Wolff, CEO of Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team and Lewis Hamilton pose for a photo ahead of the Miami Grand Prix

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff claimed that he understood Lewis Hamilton's skepticism amidst their struggles in the 2024 season. The seven-time world champion had expressed doubt over the car's capabilities while addressing his qualifying deficit to teammate George Russell this year.

The young Brit leads his experienced compatriot 7-1 in qualifying and also outscored him in the races on Sunday.

After qualifying P7 for the Monaco Grand Prix last weekend, Lewis Hamilton claimed that he doesn't anticipate beating Russell over one lap this season (via Formula 1):

“I don’t anticipate being ahead of George in qualifying particularly this year, but we’ve just got to keep pushing, and the races are strong."

Speaking with F1.com, the Mercedes team boss mentioned that both drivers were given equal machinery and treatment, even in 'tense' situations. He said:

“All drivers [are] a bit skeptical at times. I think as a team, we’ve demonstrated that even in the most tense competitions between teammates, we are trying to always balance it right and be transparent and fair."
“I can understand as a driver, you want the best out of yourself and the team, [and] sometimes when it’s going against you, you can question it. As a team we are 100 percent on a mission of giving the two drivers two great cars, the best possible cars, and the best possible strategies and support,” he added.

Mercedes team boss gives his take on Lewis Hamilton's failed attempt to overtake Max Verstappen

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff stated that there was a 'miscommunication' from the team's end which was the catalyst behind Lewis Hamilton's failed attempt at an undercut to jump ahead of Max Verstappen in Monaco.

As quoted by the aforementioned source, the Austrian said:

“That was a miscommunication first between us on the pit wall. We got that wrong, it should have been an ‘out-lap critical’ [message] in trying to undercut. Then there was a debate whether any out-lap would be enough on the new tire, so the message he got was at best confusing, but probably wrong."
"It should have been an ‘out-lap critical’. The worry in the background was that if we stretched the tire in a single lap, then what would happen later? But in summary, it was the wrong message to Lewis, and was the team’s fault,” Wolff added.

Mercedes trackside engineering director Andrew Shovlin highlighted the situation in the team's debrief:

"We never thought we would be able to undercut Max. We thought Lewis would then overtake Max, who doesn't stop".

Lewis Hamilton finished the race in P7 after failing to take sixth place from Max Verstappen during the race. He currently stands in P8 in the Driver's Championship with 42 points, a place behind George Russell who has amassed 54 points from eight races and two Sprints thus far.

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