LONDON: Mercedes Formula One team boss and co-owner Toto Wolff (pix) has revealed he tested positive for COVID-19 and had to isolate in Austria this month but is now out of quarantine.
The 49-year-old told Austria’s ORF television in an interview at Sunday’s Kitzbuehel Alpine skiing World Cup downhill that he had no symptoms.
“We had planned to be here for a few days and out of nowhere I got a positive corona test,” said Austrian Wolff. “But everything’s fine…it could have gone badly, but we’re out of quarantine.”
Five Formula One drivers, including Mercedes’ seven-times world champion Lewis Hamilton, have had the new coronavirus. So too have Aston Martin team owner Lawrence Stroll and Williams principal Simon Roberts.
Wolff owns one third of the Mercedes team as an equal partner with petrochemicals form Ineos and parent company Daimler AG.
The Austrian’s current focus is on agreeing a new deal with Hamilton, who has been out of contract since the end of last year and celebrated his 36th birthday this month.
Wolff said the lawyers were hard at work, with a deal needing to be in place before pre-season testing in Bahrain in March.
The season starts at Bahrain’s Sakhir circuit on March 28.
“We don’t make life easy for them, of course, when we both argue over Zoom and keep sending curveballs to the lawyers,” said Wolff.
“He’s in America now and I’m here. At some point we will finalise it (the deal).
“We have a really solid basis in our relationship. We have celebrated great successes together and want to continue doing so in the future. But sometimes you have to talk things out in detail, and that took or still takes us some time.” – Reuters