Mercedes Formula 1 boss Toto Wolff says reports about Lewis Hamilton’s salary demands for his next contract have been “all made up” by the media.

Hamilton is set to begin talks with Mercedes ahead of the upcoming season over a new deal, with his current contract due to expire at the end of 2020. Wolff himself is out of contract heading into F1’s new regulation era in 2021 and the futures of two of Mercedes’ key figureheads have been hot topics in recent months.

Reports in Italian media at the start of the year claimed Hamilton was demanding a bumper new four-year contract to stay at Mercedes, but speaking in an exclusive interview filmed by Sky Sports, Wolff rubbished the rumours.

“I texted Lewis the other day because I’m reading all these comments in the press about our negotiations, that Lewis is asking for so much money,” Wolff said.

“But we have never talked about it, it’s all made up. So I said maybe we should sit down one day and have the chat.

"It’s about finding a day where we spend a few hours together. We have that respect.

“I know what contribution Lewis brings to the team as a driver and as a brand. You always need to respect that.”

Hamilton revealed he is yet to sit down and open formal negotiations with Wolff but insisted he does not feel stressed about the situation and sees no reason to “rush” talks.

“We haven’t sat down and talked yet,” Hamilton explained.

“It’s crazy because there’s all this talk in the media. I have a certain approach in that I don’t stress. I trust Toto and we have that trust between us. We’ve told each other basically what our goals are and what our aims are, our commitments.

“I don’t always feel there is necessarily a rush but then sometimes, Toto is like ‘is everything okay?’. So, we always keep the channel open and I’m sure in the near-future we’ll start to sit down. I don’t feel stressed with it.”

Asked if they trust each other implicitly, Hamilton replied: “I think so”, before Wolff responded: Yes, we must.

“Because if we don’t, over the course of a season we would have situations where the trust is being tested,” he added. "I think sometimes where the targets don’t align, we can talk about that, openly.

“Fundamentally there is trust between us because we are in this together.”

 

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