Wolff admits Mercedes had Hamilton 'doubts' in 2018

Sunday, 03 february 2019, 05:48 , by Matthew Scott

Toto Wolff has conceded that Mercedes had "doubts" about Lewis Hamilton's ability to perform while flying across the world to promote his Tommy Hilfiger fashion range in 2018, but says a specific performance in his fifth title-winning campaign blew those worries away.

Hamilton's jet-set lifestyle has become a familiar thread through recent Formula 1 seasons, amid doubts over his ability to combine interests – despite the title-winning evidence to the contrary.

However, Hamilton's interests away from the track hit a new level in 2018 as he launched his first fashion range, which took him across the world to several launch events across continents.

Prior to the Singapore Grand prix, Hamilton was at fashion shows in New York and China, adding huge trips onto an already packed travel schedule in an F1 campaign.

However, Hamilton went on to deliver one of his absolute best qualifying performances on the Saturday at Marina Bay, setting up an easy win on his way to another title, immediately putting Wolff's concerns to bed.

"We always have to wait and see how Lewis feels about it. He flew to Shanghai and then to New York prior to the Singapore Grand Prix, but to be honest, we did have our doubts about it," Wolff told Formule 1.

"When he put in that mega lap in qualifying, I knew enough."

Hamilton's thrill-seeking desire has taken the focus in F1's off-season, the five-time champion taking surfing lessons from board legend Kelly Slater, before sky-diving as he keeps his pulse raised away from the track.

MORE: Wolff: Second place a failure for Ferrari
MORE: See Lewis Hamilton go skydiving in F1 off-season

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Comments (6)

  • Mark Hornsby
    Same old tosh every year .. always from haters who can't stand the fact that he isn't a monk and actually has a life, or from senile has-beens like Jackie Stewart who wants to hang on about how it was in his day (and conveniently overlook the fact that most of his contemporaries had a far wilder lifestyle than Lewis Hamilton).
  • Nikolai Gibson
    Every year same concerns from somebody. Then lewis hops off the jet and wins the race. One year he parties too much, next year he flies too much next year it will be he inhaled too much oxygen. But after all he's done he will still win races. Drivers were practicing while Lewis was partying and he beat them alllll.
  • Janice Fox
    Lewis is enjoying life. He has more interests than just F1. This seems to give him the extra buzz to smash the F1 championship. Good on you Lewis.
  • Janice Fox
    Lewis is enjoying life. He has more interests than just F1. This seems to give him the extra buzz to smash the F1 championship. Good on you Lewis.
  • Blaž Štremfelj
    It waant a problem because ferrari shot their foot over and over again... without those mistakes he would never have won

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