A breaking news story from Germany, F1-Insider and Motorsport Total are claiming that Mercedes AMG Formula 1 team boss Toto Wolff will be likely to step down, and the board of Mercedes are deciding on the team’s future in F1.
F1-Insider has today published a news article highlighting the stepping down of Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff from the F1 team. Germany’s Motorsport Total is also reporting on this story.
According to Ralph Bach of F1-Insider, Toto Wolff will resign from his operational role at the head of the factory team after the end of his contract and switch to the team’s supervisory board.
And it is not yet clear who will become his successor. Wolff had already indicated that he was thinking about his role in the team: “It’s not just a question of whether I am now extending my contract as team leader, but what we are going to do with this joint company.” says Wolff.
It is possible that Wolff would continue on in an advisory role for the Mercedes team, or whatever they become, in a very similar manner to Niki Lauda, and probably keeping his current 30% shares in the team.
It is also thought that Daimler, the parent company of Mercedes, could increase it’s 5% stake in Aston Martin, and that current majority share holder Lawrence Stroll receives significant portion of the 70% shares in Mercedes in return, thus making Stroll and Wolff majority shareholders in a Championship winning F1 team.
This would grant Daimler boss Ola Källenius an exit route for the manufacturer, albeit as a full works team in Formula 1. Cost cutting had been on the Ola’s agenda for quite some time, even before Covid-19. Regardless, it appears that the Mercedes board will be meeting regularly to achieve a complex deal that will ensure Mercedes brand remains in F1, but without the ‘luggage’ of actually owning a team. Something TJ13 has been reporting on since the end of last year.
“clear intention is to continue as a Mercedes-Benz factory team in Formula 1.” A specific request from F1-Insider.com about Wolff’s future role remained unanswered.
What would happen to Stroll’s Formula 1 team Racing Point (from 2021 as Aston Martin) remains unclear. It is quite possible that it will be used as a B team. A merger with the ex-Mercedes factory team or a sale are also conceivable. according to Bach of F1-Insider.
.@MercedesBenz and @AstonMartin are discussing a complex @F1 deal that would end @Daimler's factory commitment in its current form, see Canadian Lawrence Stroll take over part of @MercedesAMGF1, and see Toto Wolff leave his current role, per @AutoBild.
– https://t.co/M3Ypzq2DfA pic.twitter.com/e7Ncq6zQvj
— Adam Stern (@A_S12) May 28, 2020
UPDATE: Daimler & Mercedes don’t deny the rumour
Yesterday, TJ13 were one of the first websites to report on a huge story emerging from Germany, started by F1 Insider and Autobild veteran journalist Ralph Bach – Mercedes AMG F1 team boss Toto Wolff would step down and Mercedes would likely cease to be a works team, potentially becoming Aston Martin Racing.
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Minardi: “Renault and Mercedes ready to abandon Formula 1”
Renault and Mercedes ready to quit F1? – In the columns of his website, the ex F1 team boss from Faenza has voiced predictions about the future in Formula 1 of the two factory teams.
With engines still shut down waiting for the start of the 2020 season, the hottest topics that continue to occupy the fans’ minds concern the…. READ MORE ON THIS STORY
well. Italians are trying to rock Germans boat. But on another hand it may well be truth. Operation Dead meat of F1 ???