Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton Japan GP
Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton. Image Credit: Reuters

Abu Dhabi: Will he, or won’t he? That is the question that is often being popped in Formula 1 racing circles regarding the future of six-time world champion Lewis Hamilton.

Recently, the 34-year-old boy from Stevenage went on record to say that the future involvement of Mercedes boss Toto Wolff within the team would be a determining factor in Hamilton sticking around with the Silver Arrows when his contract expires at the end of the 2020 season.

Entering into the final year of his contract at Mercedes, Hamilton is free to seek out new opportunities within the paddock for 2021. And in the meantime things have reportedly begun moving for Wolff with series owners Liberty Media eyeing the Austrian as a potential CEO of F1 in place of Chase Carey.

Wolff holds a 30 per cent share in Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport Formula One Team while being Team Principal and CEO of the team. He missed the penultimate round of the championships at the Interlagos due to the launch of the Formula E series in Saudi Arabia. But speculation has been rife. “Yes, this is the first race that I missed since my time at Williams (in 2012). I did it because there is so much business going on. These things needed to be done,” Wolff explained.

“It [absence] was also an experiment for me and see how the team can do without me. What happened there [Hamilton in seventh and Bottas not finishing] would have happened any way. I was hoping it would be a perfect weekend, but it wasn’t the case,” he smiled.

The 47-year-old, however, kept his options open with his six-time champion. “Lewis and I have grown close over the past seven years. Since 2013, and we have built up a lot of trust and at the same time the two of us are part of a wider relevance,” Wolff observed.

“I would also like to know where he goes. There are many other things that we have to decide on and we will see how these pan out during the winter,” he smiled.