Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff says he will have an answer for both Valtteri Bottas and George Russell regarding their future at the team during Formula One’s summer break in a few week’s time.
Bottas and Russell are both out of contract come the end of the season, with both keen to occupy the second seat at the seven-time world champions alongside Lewis Hamilton.
The Finn has been alongside Hamilton since 2017 and helped the team become back-to-back champions, dominating the championship since 2014.
However, questions have been surrounding the 31-year-old ever since the young Mercedes driver Russell stepped in for Hamilton last season.
Russell deputised for Hamilton at the Sakhir Grand Prix after the seven-time world champion contracted COVID-19.
The Williams driver was on course to win on debut, before a poor pitstop and a puncture relegated the 23-year-old to P9, his first and only points so far in F1.
Toto Wolff warns of Red Bull pace ahead of British Grand Prix
“First of all, I don’t like to think that way; I always try to think positive and I know what I want and I want to stay with the team – that’s the best chance for me to win races next year and fight for the title,” he began on Thursday ahead of the British Grand Prix. “For some reason, if not, I will look for other options in Formula 1 because I love Formula 1, I enjoy it, I still think I have quite a good few years in front of me.
And when asked if Mercedes were to axe him, the Finn admitted it would be a big change to his mindset.
“I’m being honest and yes, for sure, it would be a different kind of mindset,” He added.
“It would be a new kind of chapter in my career and your mental approach should be different. Most likely you wouldn’t be fighting for wins and the title, at least in the beginning, so it would be a new project, and on the other hand that could also be interesting.
“But as I said before what my intentions are in keeping my seat because I think we make a really strong team now at Mercedes as we are, so let’s see.”