Lewis Hamilton contract: Mercedes future update provided by Toto Wolff

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The current World Champion Lewis Hamilton is set to stay at Mercedes, according to team boss Toto Wolff, who has been speaking to German outlet RTL.

With the F1 season due to start on March 28 in Bahrain, the champions appear to be increasingly confident of extending the Brit’s stay beyond this season.

The 36-year-old was, according to ex-F1 team chief Eddie Jordan, holding up contact negotiations due to a number of issues surrounding percentage shares of TV revenues.

Jordan said: “There are some things that are relevant at the moment in that Toto has been in isolation due to COVID and Lewis is in America, so these negotiations are being done on Zoom.

"And number two, it is kind of complicated because Ineos, I believe, have bought into Mercedes because of the wealth of value that Lewis brings to that.”

Wolff, however, has insisted that the deal will be signed soon and they are not far from settling on a package.

The 49-year-old Mercedes boss said: “I assume that we are not far from an announcement. We don’t want to be put under pressure, but it has to be a sensible agreement.”

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Indeed, it does appear to be when and not if Hamilton will sign his latest contract with the German manufacturer and it will enable him to target becoming a record eight-time World Champion.

Hamilton certainly expects a tougher challenge this time round, however, as he said: “I expect a tough year, I can assure you of that. Red Bull has shown that they are very strong in 2020.

“We have always demanded the maximum from our engines, but they were simply faster. Therefore, we still have to work very hard.”

Hamilton and the other F1 drivers are set to begin pre-season testing in Bahrain on the weekend of March 12-14 following the postponement of the Australian Grand Prix, which makes Bahrain the opening race on the F1 2021 race calendar.

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