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Toto Wolff

Wolff drops big hint over identity of Hamilton's Mercedes successor

Mercedes' Toto Wolff must make a decision soon as to who will partner George Russell in 2025.

Wolff Mercedes Saudi Arabia
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Toto Wolff has dropped a big hint that Andrea Kimi Antonelli will be promoted to Formula 1 as Lewis Hamilton's Mercedes successor. 

With the seven-time champion set to depart for Ferrari, Wolff has been on the hunt for a successor, and has been keen to land Max Verstappen from Red Bull.

However, it appears likely that Verstappen will be staying at Red Bull with the driver Hamilton is to replace at Ferrari, Carlos Sainz, also touted as a potential replacement. 

Antonelli is a Mercedes F2 protege who has been dubbed 'the new Verstappen' with Wolff reportedly leaning towards promoting the Italian. 

No official word has been given by Mercedes yet - although Wolff has dropped a big clue as to who will partner George Russell in 2025.

“We just want to concentrate on Kimi, that is our future, young drivers," Wolff told Sky Germany.

“We want to commit to that, to young drivers and that is what we’ve told Carlos."

Antonelli to Mercedes?

Both Antonelli and Mercedes and Alpine reserve Mick Schumacher recently completed testing days for the team - although it was not a straight shootout for the seat as had been claimed. 

Wolff explained what happened at the test and described claims that Antonelli out-performed not only Schumacher but also Russell as "nonsense."

"They both completed the program that we gave them, and the performance was exactly what we expected," he said of Antonelli and Schumacher.

"Some of this talk that Kimi was faster than George and much faster than Mick is absolute nonsense. They all drove different programs.

“All three were equally fast, George was by far the fastest and that's the way it should be, but we ran our programmes. It was not about setting fast times."

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