Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes have recently been on the up and up. The year did not start particularly well for them, as their pace was much worse than that of the two frontrunners, but as time passed, that gap narrowed, and this has especially been the case in the past few races. As for Lewis Hamilton, who seemed inferior to his teammate for parts of the season, he has definitely picked up in the past five races or so.
Since Canada, he has been on the podium in every race, including 2 second-placed finishes in the last two races before the season break. Since Silverstone, where he at one point was very much in contention for the victory, Hamilton has looked somewhat revitalized. Regardless, the season has overall, been rather disappointing for Mercedes – the car has, on most occasions, just not been good enough.
This is in stark contrast to the rest of the hybrid era, in which Mercedes were competing for victory most of the time, and won all the Constructor Championships. They’d certainly hope they can get back to fighting for the wins after the season break – and the technical directives will certainly help them along the way. In a recent interview with The Financial Times, Toto Wolff discussed everything Mercedes, himself, and Formula 1.
Toto Wolff: ‘Lewis knows how to push people out of their comfort zone’
Lewis Hamilton is well-known for his activism – for diversity in Motorsport, against racism, for LGBT rights, human rights, and towards the environment as well, much like Sebastian Vettel. For some people, it gets too much, and he has been called out for it more than a few times. However, he has not given the comments credence, and continued on, doing what he believes in.
Talking about Hamilton’s activism, Toto Wolff said: “He can put the finger where it hurts.” but on the other hand, Mercedes, being a commercial entity, must remain more conservative about ‘sensitive topics’.
Toto Wolff and Lewis Hamilton have developed an understanding, and the team principal fully endorses the Briton’s activism, alongside his other interests, such as skydiving, and the other things Hamilton does as a public figure, such as appearing at the Met Gala, or fashion shows. It is understood that allowing Lewis Hamilton to be Lewis Hamilton enhances his performances.
Wolff further commented: “Lewis has never caused any headache, neither for me or the team. You need to push people out of their comfort zone, and this is what [Hamilton] is doing.”
In his summer break, Lewis Hamilton is journeying through Africa and has gone to Namibia, Rwanda, and Kenya. He has termed it as a spiritual journey, and in particular, he called his trip to Namibia life-changing. Mercedes will hope that the journey further revitalizes Hamilton, and enables to become an even better version of himself.