Mercedes boss, Toto Wolff, is still in the process of contract negotiations with Lewis Hamilton. However, Wolff stated that he is confident that a new deal will be struck before pre-season testing in March.
At the end of December, Hamilton's previous two-year agreement expired. This puts Hamilton, the seven-time title winner, in the unusual position of being without a contract. With less than two months before the kick-off of the new season.
in Austria earlier this month, Wolff said that the talks were continuing to take time between F1's champion team and driver.
Wolff stated that "We don't make life easy for them, of course, when we both argue over Zoom and keep sending curveballs to the lawyers. He's in America now and I'm here. At some point we will finalise it (the deal)."
Mercedes and Hamilton have remained relaxed about the contract discussions amid the expectation from both sides that a new deal will ultimately be agreed.
We have to assume that @LewisHamilton is relentlessly marching up snowy mountains on skis in anticipation of a hard season of F1 racing, and not just to be ready for #SkyF1 ‘s totally comprehensive F1 coverage..— Martin Brundle 💙 (@MBrundleF1) January 25, 2021
When it comes to rumours regarding George Russell, Wolff ruled out using his impressive performance deputising for Hamilton at the Sakhir GP as leverage in negotiations.
Wolff continued; "We have a really solid basis in our relationship. We have celebrated great successes together and want to continue doing so in the future. But sometimes you have to talk things out in detail, and that took or still takes us some time."
Pre-season testing starts in Bahrain on March 12, with the season's first race at the same venue on March 28.
Wolff revealed that he has contracted the Covid virus however he stated at the Kitzbuehel Alpine skiing World Cup downhill, that he had shown no symptoms after testing positive for Covid-19 in his homeland earlier in January.
Wolff stated that; "We had planned to be here for a few days and out of nowhere I got a positive coronavirus test. But everything's fine...it could have gone badly, but we're out of quarantine."