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Lewis Hamilton Win Was ‘Inspiring’ for Possible Successor Kimi Antonelli, Says Toto Wolff

Pranay Bhagi

Lewis Hamilton Win Was ‘Inspiring’ for Possible Successor Kimi Antonelli, Says Toto Wolff

Lewis Hamilton ended his 30-month drought of wins in style with a victory on his home turf. And Mercedes boss Toto Wolff feels that Hamilton’s performance will be inspiring for the man widely speculated to take his place with the Silver Arrows — Kimi Antonelli.

“It’s in a way, I don’t know, at this moment where you see the greatest British driver checking out with us, at the British Grand Prix, in the garage, you have this young Italian [Kimi Antonelli] that hasn’t got a driving license even, that was watching that scene”, said Wolff according to GP Blog. 

Explaining how Hamilton’s win would’ve inspired Antonelli, seeing how much a home win meant, Wolff added, “And at the end, he thought, ‘I want to be that one day’. Maybe not here [at Silverstone], maybe [at] Monza.”

Wolff missed the chance to sign Max Verstappen back in 2014 but doesn’t want to miss out on the Italian prodigy. The F2 rookie has been testing with the Brackley team since the start of this season. The Mercedes CEO is eager to get Antonelli in his car as soon as possible.

However, it might be too early for the 17-year-old, who hasn’t even completed a full year in F2. Jumping straight away to a team as big as Mercedes might not be the right move. Many pundits recommended that Antonelli should join a smaller team like Williams or have another year in F2.

The Mercedes boss has also stated that he’s not in a hurry to make the announcement as Verstappen is still believed to be an option for replacing Hamilton.

Wolff is still waiting on Max Verstappen

Wolff, to this date, regrets not signing Verstappen when he first came into the F1 scene. Amid all the Antonelli chatter, the constant speculation of Verstappen leaving Red Bull for Mercedes continues to make the headlines. 

Christian Horner and Toto Wolff have been having a back-and-forth around Verstappen’s Red Bull exit speculations. The Mercedes CEO suggested that the Dutchman moving is still possible while Horner denied it and suggested that Wolff should get Jos Verstappen if he wants a ‘Verstappen’ in his car. 

A few months ago, the Austrian boss confirmed how Mercedes doesn’t have a fast enough car to lure Verstappen. However, since the recent upgrades to the W15, the Brackley outfit is back on the front once again. Wolff believes that this performance may be good enough to make Verstappen think about the opportunity.

While a move is possible, the F1 community needs to wait and see what Red Bull does in terms of performance upgrades in the upcoming races.

Post Edited By:Aishwary Gaonkar

About the author

Pranay Bhagi

Pranay Bhagi

Pranay Bhagi is an F1 Journalist at the Sportsrush. He's been following the sport since 2010 and has been a Sebastian Vettel enthusiant since then. He started his F1 journalism journey two years ago and has written over 1300 articles. As an Aston Martin supporter, he hopes for Fernando Alonso to win the 3rd title. Apart from F1, anything with an engine and wheel intruiges him. In true petrolhead sense, he often travels across the country on his motorcycle.

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