Hamilton: Toto Wolff and I have disagreements, but we trust each other
Lewis Hamilton and Toto Wolff have explained that strong communication and implicit trust in each other and their decision making is vital in ensuring the Mercedes Formula 1 team is a continued success.
Speaking to Sky Sports F1, Hamilton told how the relationship between Wolff and himself has evolved over time.
"We have disagreements," said Hamilton. "We’ve never had a bust up or anything like that. We have disagreements but we just talk it out.
"The thing is, I think we’ve just always been really transparent with each other whether you like it or not, and I think that’s been why it’s as healthy as it is.
"Communication really is so important though, because we’re constantly both being interviewed. There’ll be times that Toto’s been interviewed and I won’t even know he’s been interviewed and vice versa.
"Months down the line, they’ll pick a single line or a single word and they’ll twist it. You’ll see something in the news and you’ll go, ‘Toto, how could you say that?’ and he’ll say, ‘I didn’t say that.’
"We’ve learnt over time because in the past you’d see something and it would frustrate you and rather than saying something about it, you’d dwell on it for several days. Suddenly you’d bump into each other and then we’re like, ‘no, that’s actually not what’s happened.’
"Now we find that if there’s a problem, we’ll pick up the phone and we’ll sort it out straight away."
Hamilton has made repeat calls via team radio during race to change strategy or, on a few occasions, question why his team-mate, whether it was Nico Rosberg or Valtteri Bottas, has been put on what he believes to be a stronger strategy.
Wolff explained that, on those rare occasions where targets are not aligned, he has faith that Hamilton will trust the decision from the pit wall, just as he puts trust in Hamilton every time the car leaves the garage.
"We must [trust each other]," said Wolff. "If we, over the course of the season, have a situation where trust is being tested, and I think sometimes where the targets don't align, we can talk about that.
"We can say openly why the targets didn't align. You had that target and we were representing the team on another one, and then it's out in the open, but fundamentally there is trust between us because we are in this together."
GPFans is a multi-platform, multi-language brand dedicated to Formula One coverage. We bring you all the ins and outs of the sport, 24/7, everything from up-to-the-minute news and features to the latest viral stories and clips.
We believe that a new generation of exciting, outspoken drivers will make F1 more popular than ever before, and we want to give our users access to as much of their heroes as possible, on and off the track. From Lewis Hamilton to Max Verstappen, Daniel Ricciardo to Sebastian Vettel, we provide in-depth analysis of every every Grand Prix in the season, from Australia to Abu Dhabi.
With Formula One under the new ownership of Liberty Media, how the sport is being covered is evolving, and GPFans will look to be at the heart of this progression into new media, as one of the fastest-growing sites covering the king of motorsports.