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Wolff Mercedes F1 Investment

Toto Wolff’s Bold Move to Transform Mercedes F1

11/02/2024

In a decisive moment, Toto Wolff joined Mercedes F1, pushing for increased investment to chase championship glory, marking a pivotal shift.

Toto Wolff recalls the day he decided to join Mercedes F1 as both an investor and executive. He met with the board of the German marque and immediately urged it to increase its investment to secure wins.

“I told them, ‘I’m at Williams with exactly the same budgets expecting to finish in the top six, and you have the same budget but aim to be world champions. That’s the issue,'” Wolff shares in F1 Racing Confidential.

“They were quite upset, but I said, ‘don’t shoot the messenger’. Upon my arrival, I informed Mercedes that we needed a budget matching that of our main competitors, Ferrari and Red Bull.”

Wolff’s Vision Transforms Mercedes F1 Team

“‘I can’t guarantee that this will win us the championship, but I can assure you that without it, you won’t win’. That was the turning point, and the board said, ‘tell us what you need.'”

“There was no sense of team spirit”

He then endeavored to deeply engage in understanding how each department operated and how the team functioned as a unified entity. The Austrian also sought to foster a sense of belonging within the team.

“Prior to my arrival, Brackley – which I referred to as Team Brackley – was a team of survivors, having weathered the storm through Honda, Brawn, and the transition to Mercedes in those years.”

“Yet, there was no sense of team spirit that I believed was essential, but there was a very strong group that had been there for a long time and possessed significant expertise. What I aimed to establish was consistency and team values. The right mindset, accountability, and a blame-free culture.”

“I was fully involved in every decision, whether technical or commercial. I’ve always had long-term relationships and knew that if I made a decision, it was for life. It was no longer just an investment because I realized F1 is my niche and I love what I do.”

Wolff Mercedes F1 Investment. Wolff Mercedes F1 Investment

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