Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff has dismissed as "baseless" and without truth the suggestion Lewis Hamilton was seeking certain clauses in his new contract with the team.
The seven-time champion has only signed a one-year agreement for the coming season, which has naturally led to immediate conjecture the team and driver were unable to see eye-to-eye on certain points.
As negotiations dragged on, there were also numerous rumours that Hamilton wanted certain clauses in the deal, such as his say on ruling out Max Verstappen or a split in future revenues.
But a dismissive Wolff said: "There was never a moment when we thought he wouldn't sign, and there was never a moment where he doubted.
“On the specific clauses that were out there in the media, I don’t know where they came from because none of them were true.
“I actually read about this, I found it an interesting perspective, but the truth is there was not a second of discussion about any driver-specific clause. He has never asked for that in the last eight years and it’s a team decision.
“The other clause about a revenue split or revenue share came out of nowhere [and] that rumour was baseless too, so none of that was ever part of our discussions.”
As for the specific reasoning behind a contract solely for this season, Wolff has insisted it was more a case of recent time constraints and with the campaign fast looming.
"We jointly agreed on a one-year deal," asserted Wolff. "First of all there is a substantial regulations change in 2022, and we also want to see how the world develops and the company.
"And on the other side, because we kept it very late, we wanted to discuss the contract at the end of the season between the Bahrain races, and then Lewis obviously didn’t feel well [with Covid-19] In the end, we started our negotiation, our conversation just before Christmas.
“It was important to get it done as soon as possible and in that respect, we thought let’s postpone the discussion about 2022 and onwards to a later stage in 2021.”
As for when any 2022 deal could potentially be ironed out, Wolff added: “Definitely earlier than the 2021 deal!
"It is always tricky to find some time whilst racing but we have learnt the lesson that there could be external factors that could delay discussions and we don’t want to end up in January again, so probably we are going to pick up chatting about 2022 much earlier.
"We agreed jointly that we didn’t want to drag it out as much or as long as we did this time around and we are trying to find some time together during the season.”
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