Toto Wolff expects ‘tension’ between Lewis Hamilton and George Russell at Mercedes

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The British pair have very much been on the same page during a difficult 2022 (Getty Images)
The British pair have very much been on the same page during a difficult 2022 (Getty Images)

Toto Wolff is fully aware that Lewis Hamilton and George Russell's relationship as teammates may change if and when they are competing for the "highest stakes" in Formula 1.

The British pair, brought together this season following Russell's arrival from Williams in the offseason, have very much been on the same page during a difficult 2022.

Indeed Wolff believes the "biggest opponent" for both has been underperforming Mercedes car rather than each other.

However, he is under no illusions that should the two eventually compete at the very front of the grid against each other for race wins and world titles then that may change.

“I think the biggest opponent for George and Lewis was the car, not the teammate or other drivers,” Wolff told Motorsport.com. “And that was certainly advantageous in some respects.

“They used different solutions and set-ups, even a lot on some occasions, with the aim of exchanging impressions and useful information to come out of the situation we experienced."

“When the objectives become races and championships, I will be able to tell you whether the respect I see today between the two will prove to be a predominant factor," he added.

“When playing for the highest stakes I think it’s natural to have some tension, but if people fundamentally respect and esteem each other then it will never go too far.”

The 2022 Formula 1 season returns from its summer break next week with the Belgian Grand Prix.