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Toto Wolff: ‘Lewis Hamilton won’t let criticism close to his soul’



Toto Wolff: 'Lewis Hamilton won't let criticism close to his soul'

The Mercedes principal on his respect and admiration for the British driver, who he says takes criticism on board, learns from his mistakes and can race beyond his 40s

Lewis Hamilton (left) celebrates with the Mercedes principal, Toto Wolff, after winning the 2019 Monaco Grand Prix.
Lewis Hamilton
For a man who leads the dominant force in modern Formula One, Toto Wolff makes scant concession to the trappings of success. Indeed, at home the Mercedes team principal, the architect of six consecutive drivers’ and constructors’ championship doubles, hosts only two pieces of F1 memorabilia.

Neither is chosen lightly, and while one reflects Mercedes’s iron grip on the sport, the other is more symbolic, more personal and instructive of the relationship he enjoys with the driver who has shared this journey to the top, Lewis Hamilton. Wolff’s respect for Hamilton is palpable, not least recently for his strong position on promoting racial equality and diversity. It has brought his driver criticism but the Austrian has only admiration for his stance.

“Lewis has been for some time one of the leading, most recognised people within F1. There are not a lot of personalities even near that,” he says. “He is like a lightning rod, because he wears his heart on his sleeve and voices his opinion. We need exactly that, we need character, we need opinions.”

Tellingly, Wolff, who sits at the very heart of Mercedes alongside Hamilton, believes this strength of character has made him the man and the driver he is.

“If you express your opinion and you are a public persona you will always polarise,” he adds. “Lewis has been at the helm of this sport for more than 10 years. When you are out there and have been abused or criticised, you cope with it much better after a while. He takes the criticism on board and learns from it, but he is not letting it anywhere close to his soul.”

Wolff has been the team principal at Mercedes since 2013, the same year Hamilton joined. In 2014 they secured their first title together and have not stopped since. At Wolff’s home the F1 constructors’ championship trophy is displayed with pride, his team’s name etched into history on its gleaming panels. This year, a seventh double would be a record in the sport. Wolff is emphatic in insisting what a team effort it has been.

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The only other item that imparts a suggestion of Wolff’s day job is the helmet Hamilton had designed to honour Niki Lauda and wore at the 2019 Monaco Grand Prix. Lauda had been instrumental in bringing Hamilton to Mercedes and as non-executive chairman became one of Wolff’s closest friends. The three-times world champion died at the start of the week leading up to Monaco. It was an emotional weekend and Hamilton delivered what Lauda would have wanted for the team – a win.

Lewis Hamilton in Monaco with the helmet dedicated to Niki Lauda.
Lewis Hamilton in Monaco with the helmet dedicated to Niki Lauda. Photograph: Benoît Tessier/Reuters

Lewis Hamilton

Wolff clearly treasures his memories of Lauda that are, as the helmet symbolises, inextricably linked to his relationship with Hamilton. The driver and his principal share a clear emotional and personal bond. Wolff is perhaps the man best placed in F1 to offer assessment of why Hamilton is so successful on the track and so compelling a character off it.

“Lewis has become a friend, a partner, somebody I trust and vice versa,” he says. He believes the key moment came in 2016 after an acrimonious season won by Hamilton’s then Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg, after which Wolff and Hamilton had to sit down and clear the air. It worked and what had been a professional relationship became personal.

“Since then we have had a brutal honesty and transparency with each other,” says Wolff. “There is nothing that is hidden, there is no agenda that is not known.” Hamilton is so close to Wolff that he has remarked his decision on whether to stay with the team could be influenced by whether Wolff remains.

“It’s been a relationship that has its own complexities but has grown so much,” Hamilton said at Silverstone. “It is just going from strength to strength. I think in relationships, in friendships, as you get to know about each other your barriers start to come down a little bit and you open up more to each other.”

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Wolff in turn recognises that Hamilton has surpassed being merely the man behind the wheel. “Lewis has two really outstanding characteristics,” he says. “The talent that he has and the way he has developed that talent and himself in the car and outside the car. That makes him this great champion.”

With five of his six titles for Mercedes, Hamilton goes into this weekend’s British Grand Prix looking formidably strong in his attempt to make it seven and match Michael Schumacher’s record. He has two wins from three races this season and loves the circuit. The determination to deliver at home will be as fierce as ever.

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Yet this success has not come by accident. Although Hamilton’s natural talent has served him well, F1 is littered with exceptionally gifted drivers who could not translate their touch into triumph. Wolff has closely observed Hamilton’s ability to relentlessly build on his strengths.

“One of the things that inspires me the most is his ability for personal growth,” he says. “The racing driver that adapts to every new car, adapts his driving style, is a skill that not many have. He has the same ability around his persona. He develops, he analyses his weakness and strengths. Always with the focus of improving himself.”

That Hamilton has developed as a driver is clear, but he has become a leader. He has been uncompromising and resolutely determined in speaking out against racism after the death of George Floyd and Wolff was entirely unsurprised he did so.


“If you are a child eight years old being racially abused on a go-kart track, imagine the scars that leaves,” he says. “We as middle-aged white men can never put ourselves in a situation of someone who has been racially abused. So I was always very open to his opinion and judgment. I think he realised that a peaceful, silent protest hasn’t changed anything in the last 60 years. So maybe it’s time to utilise your voice in a more polarising and confrontational way with the hope that he can trigger change. I am, with all my heart, and everybody in the team are on board with the fight against racism.”

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Hamilton may indeed polarise but at Silverstone he has always been received rapturously. With six victories at the British GP, he is the most successful driver at the race; a seventh is well within his grasp. There will be no celebratory communion afterwards with the fans but they may enjoy the ride with him for some time yet.

“He is 35 now, the way he adapts I think he can race beyond his 40s,” says Wolff. “He can push the boundaries in the way Tom Brady did in American football. Who would have thought that a quarterback could win a Super Bowl beyond the age of 40? Tom Brady has shown everybody that it is possible. Maybe Lewis will do the same in F1.”

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Lewis Hamilton

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Stephen Curry & Chris Bosh Bring Families to Kids’ Choice Sports Awards 2016



Stephen Curry
Stephen Curry & Chris Bosh Bring Families to Kids' Choice Sports Awards 2016

Stephen Curry and his wife Ayesha walk the red carpet at the 2016 Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Sports Awards on Thursday (July 14) at UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion in Westwood, Calif.

Stephen Curry

The 28-year-old Golden State Warriors basketball player was seen meeting up with Miami Heat player Chris Bosh at the event.

Chris was joined at the awards show by his wife Adrienne and their four-year-old son Jackson.

Stephen is nominated for three awards – Best Male Athlete, Clutch Player of the Year, and Sickest Moves.

Stephen Curry

20+ pictures inside of Stephen Curry and Chris Bosh at the event…

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“My mum was very happy and emotional,” Lewis Hamilton elated following his mother’s surname being added to his name



Lewis Hamilton
“My mum was very happy and emotional,” Lewis Hamilton elated following his mother’s surname being added to his name

Lewis Hamilton’s gesture of adding his mother’s surname to his name has been appreciated by the racing community

Lewis Hamilton has been a family man throughout his life and it became even more visible after the Abu Dhabi catastrophe. The seven time world champion has had it tough in the last few months after his heartbreaking defeat a the hands of Max Verstappen in the last lap of the last race of the season. The former world champion was so close to winning the eighth world championship before a controversial call took that opportunity away from him.

Lewis Hamilton

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This had a deep impact on Lewis as he even considering retiring from the sport. But after taking a break from the chaos, he decided to return to the sport he absolutely loves. But it would have been impossible for him to do it on his own. His family, especially his mother and his two kids have helped him heal from that devastating blow. His mother has been one of the most influential people in his life.

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Lewis Hamilton

She has been there during thick and thin for his beloved son. She was also there while he received his knighthood and the smile on her face couldn’t be wiped as she saw her son get one of the biggest honors. Lewis Hamilton has also reciprocated that love with gestures of his own. The latest being him adding his mother’s surname to his name.

Lewis Hamilton’s gesture of adding his mother’s surname to his name has been appreciated by the racing community
Lewis Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton
He has time and again laid down the importance of his family in his life. Lewis Hamilton recently said, “I’m really proud of my family’s name, Hamilton.”

“None of you might know that my mum’s name is Larbalestier and I am just about to put that in my name.”

“I don’t fully understand the idea that when people get married the woman loses their name.”

“I really want my mum to continue on with the Hamilton name.” As reported by skysports.

Lewis Hamilton has been the pioneer of Formula 1 but the seven time has never forgotten his roots. His family has been his priority no matter what the situation is and this is an example for every person across all sports.

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Shubham Bajpai


Shubham Bajpai is an F1 content writer at He is a sports enthusiast but his sheer love for Football and F1 holds an edge over the other sports. He has completed Law from Symbiosis International University. He is also a national level football player and a state level athlete.
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Ja’s perfect tweet for Steph’s diabolical ‘night night’ dagger



Steph Curry put the Dallas Mavericks to bed on Friday night.

Down by as many as 19 points, Curry fueled the Warriors’ furious 126-117 comeback win and inserted the dagger into Dallas’ hopes with a game-sealing 3-pointer with 36.2 seconds left to go up 2-0 in the Western Conference finals.

As the basketball flew out of his hand, Curry appeared to literally say “night night” to the Mavericks.

Memphis Grizzlies star Ja Morant, whose season was given the “night night” treatment when Golden State defeated the Grizzlies in six games in the Western Conference semifinals, seemed to enjoy the moment on Twitter.

Curry has been outstanding through two games of the Western Conference finals. He posted a double-double in Game 1 with 21 points and 12 rebounds, and he followed it up with a team-high 32 points in Friday’s victory.

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Stephen Curry started small, but he’s always been big-time



Stephen Curry
Stephen Curry started small, but he's always been big-time

He was 5-6, baby-faced and 15, a freshman so scrawny that his jersey fit him like a hand-me-down nightgown — so loose it slid down his chest and could not hide his heart.

Playing without consequence as a JV call-up, Charlotte Christian’s next-generation star subbed into a state tournament game going sour against Ravenscroft School. And yet, hidden in that 11-point loss, a seminal moment, a recognition of the play that would become this young man’s staple: a push down the court, a confident pull-up 3, a swish.

Stephen Curry

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“I remember looking over to my assistants,” Charlotte Christian coach Shonn Brown remembers. “And I said, ‘Okay, we’re just going to hand him the keys to our program.’ ”

And thus, there against the Ravens from Raleigh, Brown saw that the days of junior-varsity-star Stephen Curry were nevermore. That, somehow, the son of Dell Curry could avoid both his father’s shadow and spotlight, take in his teachings and shine on his own stage.

Stephen Curry (Source: Charlotte Christian communications)

Long before Curry’s name led the NBA MVP conversation, long before he obliterated his own record for 3-pointers in a season (286) and led the league in steals, free throw percentage and win shares per 48 minutes, he was Charlotte’s hidden gym rat.

But if no one else did, Curry himself knew what was coming.

Stephen Curry

“His vision isn’t just the vision of being one step ahead in terms of the action on the court,” explained Bob McKillop, Curry’s coach at Davidson. “His vision is also his ability to see what’s in front of him.”

Burning within the outwardly cool Curry was a dream. Though nationally ignored, developing locally was a legion of Curry believers. The start of something big in the body of someone so small.

That’s Curry. A walking, sharpshooting contradiction. A 3-point maestro full of two-point traits: the baby-faced assassin. The giving scorer. The humble competitor. The late bloomer that found ways to grow faster than his body. An oxymoron with brains.

And that’s why, despite Rivals’ modest three-star rating and the lack of interest from powerhouse schools, those closest to Curry remember something different as he matured into an MVP-caliber player. Coaches Brown and McKillop remember why Curry’s striking lack of size and muscle didn’t matter: he had everything else. A cocktail of traits that fueled his ascent from Signing Day silence to basketball superstardom.

Stephen Curry

“I never thought there was a physical detriment,” McKillop says. “From the first time I saw him play on a basketball court, I thought he was going to be a star.”

According to Brown, most failed to see what McKillop saw. It was to their detriment.

“Coaches make decisions,” says Brown. “They look at him, he looks like he’s 14, and they all want him to redshirt. But it’s the things that they can’t give him — the things that he already had.”

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Sonya, Stephen and Dell Curry (Source: Charlotte Christian communications)

Curry had the work ethic of a cager scorned, the IQ of a player’s son surrounded by the game.

Despite Dell Curry’s 16-year NBA career, after which he retired as the Charlotte Hornets’ all-time leading scorer, his son’s opportunities in the game were not fed to him with silver spoons.

Coach Brown remembers, instead, Curry’s willingness to work. At his home, it took the shape of commonplace chores: washing dogs and dishes. But in the gym, be it at Charlotte Christian or in afterhours sessions with his dad off site, Curry’s focus was extraordinary.

Stephen Curry

“If we had a 6 a.m. workout, (the Currys) were here,” Brown said. “First ones in. Last ones to leave. Taking game film home and watching it as we’re preparing for opponents.

“Every year he brought something new to his game. And that was truly just a function of him working.”

That ability and desire to improve drew Davidson’s longtime coach to the undersized guard. Curry’s body grew slowly, but his game grew rapidly.

“A lot of people grow, but it takes them a long time to grow,” McKillop said. “He was always getting better. Always wanting to get better.”

The year-to-year improvements spanned all aspects of Curry’s game. He’d come back stronger so he could compete for loose balls in the paint and defend bigger guards. He’d work with his dad to raise his release point and overcome would-be shot-blockers. He’d develop mid-range touch, new passing skills and dribbling moves that made him as much a threat in the lane as beyond the arc.

The fact that he came back taller each season was secondary. According to Brown, his mindset was simple: “I know I’m putting the work in. I know I’m going to excel at this. I have goals in mind and I’m going to make those goals happen.”

McKillop claims that will to work continues to push Curry. The coach says he and his former player spoke before the playoffs — and Curry had work to do: core exercises and cardio to compensate for 17 missed fourth quarters this season, for the 32.7 minutes per game that would pale in comparison to his postseason playing time.

“Here’s a guy who is in the talk for MVP and he’s going to work at his stamina,” McKillop said. “How many guys are going to do that, that late in the season, with that amount of success?

“To me, that’s a great statement about Stephen Curry.”

Coupled with Curry’s dedication to the craft was a precocious understanding for the game. Brown remembers that, early in Curry’s high school career, he was smart to the point of team detriment. Curry would see the floor, the way the play should go, where his teammate should cut. Curry would send a pass sailing out of bounds, where a player with his vision might have been.

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But Curry, a subtle but successful communicator, worked with them. They started cutting, started catching. And in a story that would repeat itself, the teammates around Curry got better.

The vision and leadership translated to Davidson. McKillop says Curry stands on “the top of the list” of basketball IQs he has encountered — and this at an elite academic institution. How quickly did that translate into a leadership role?

“The minute he stepped on campus,” McKillop said.

But Curry’s ability to step in and lead did not come solely from who he was as a player in high school. More so, Curry captured the hearts of those close to him because of who he had become as a person.

Stephen Curry (Source: Charlotte Christian communications)

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Hidden beneath his now-famous, now-State Farm sanctioned smile, Curry had killer confidence and competitiveness. McKillop called it Curry’s “quest for excellence” — a “fire that raged within him.”

Stephen Curry

“He had no fear of failure,” McKillop said. “If he missed a shot, missed five shots, he didn’t care. It didn’t disrupt him. It didn’t destroy his focus. He knew he was going to make the next five.”

Brown saw it play out on and beyond the court. Be it checkers, spades, the arcade golf game Golden Tee, games of HORSE or halfcourt shoot-offs with his dad, Curry never held back. In his own kind, soft-spoken style, Curry wanted you to know he wanted to win, that he could conquer you. No mercy.

Even in his Christian devotion, he showcased his subtle on-court bravado. Etched on his sneaker at Davidson was the scripture from Philippians 4:13: “I can do all things.”

And yet, he had humility. According to Brown and McKillop, the sweet smile, often accompanied by a mangled mouthpiece, isn’t for show. It’s who Stephen Curry is. It’s why he is.

“You find me a pro athlete today that can have that balance between humility and confidence that he has,” McKillop said, “and I’ll be shocked.”

Teammates respond to Curry because he is the rare breed of star that can shoulder great pressure while deflecting great praise. An all-time record holder for single-season 3-pointers that had to be convinced to shoot more.


Brown and his coaching staff sat Curry down during his junior season at Charlotte Christian.

“You gotta take more shots,” Brown told him.

Curry’s fear: “I don’t want guys thinking I’m selfish.”

Stephen Curry

“Let me rewind it and say it this way,” Brown said. “For us to have more success, you have to take more shots.”

Curry got the message, a message he translates to his game today. Another contradiction: Curry as shooter-distributer prototype. But Brown says that moment truly revealed Curry’s character.

“It was definitely not about him,” Brown said. “He is concerned about what his teammates think. He knows his first job as a point guard is to set people up. That in itself made him a better player.”

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It also made Charlotte Christian a better team. They took three trips to the state tournament in Curry’s tenure, including a runner-up finish in 2006. He graduated as the school’s all-time leading scorer, a two-time All-State honoree and a career 48 percent shooter beyond the stripe.

That selflessness also has, reportedly, made Curry an all-star person. Both coaches credit parents Dell and Sonya for instilling in their son strong, Christian values, kindness, and a lack of entitlement. But traits surviving the attention and accolades thrown at NBA superstars today may truly represent Curry’s greatest accomplishment.

Brown and Curry remain close. Early in his NBA career, Curry still came back in the summers, still asked for the keys to the Charlotte Christian gym, held his summer camps at his old school. And even when he isn’t in town, Brown finds a way to go to him. So the coach has witnessed personally how devoted Curry is to his wife and child. How, on the road, he’ll guard himself from the basketball world’s temptations, more likely to be watching game film or the Golf Channel than going out on the town. How Warrior teammates have nothing negative to say about their point guard. How Curry cares for the fans.

It is in that regard, almost solely, where Brown saw Curry struggle. As his national popularity and endorsements hit the stratosphere, Curry discovered the inconvenient truth of superstardom: there isn’t time for everyone. Not everyone gets an autograph or an appearance. As he had on the court, Curry wanted to prove that he could not just score, but assist.

“If you really know him, he would take the time,” Brown said. “He’s so giving that, I wonder, how hard is it when he has to keep walking forward?”

But onward Curry marches. As he has always done, the once too-skinny, three-star recruit that couldn’t get a scholarship from his dad’s alma mater at Virginia Tech keeps getting further. He’s the catalyst of the top-seeded Warriors. He’s on the precipice of winning, perhaps, a title. He’s the most likely candidate to receive the ultimate mantelpiece: the MVP trophy.

Stephen Curry

And yet, with so much evidence to suggest Curry’s success is here to stay, there’s still something impossible about it all. This guy? With this body? That’s this nice? Is this good?

Brown says yes. But he understands the doubts.

“Even though he’s getting it, he’s not a guy that says, ‘I wanna be in the limelight. Look at me,” Brown said. “But there’s always a doubter over there saying, ‘This can’t be real. There’s got to be something we are going to find.’ ”

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Lewis Hamilton signed supporter’s arm at British Grand Prix… so the fan got it tattooed



Lewis hamilton
Lewis Hamilton signed supporter's arm at British Grand Prix... so the fan got it tattooed

A petrol head has thanked Lewis Hamilton after getting the world champion’s signature tattooed onto his arm.

Wayne Adlington took to Twitter to show off his new tattoo and messaged the Mercedes team after he revealed he promised Hamilton that he would get the tattoo.

Lewis hamilton

Hamilton had signed Wayne’s arm with a permanent marker during a parade at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, before ensuring the Brit that he would be getting a permanent momento.

His wife even took a selfie with Hamilton, who smiled at the camera through the fence.

Mercedes tweeted Wayne back saying: “Wow, Wayne that’s incredible! That day and that moment will always be with you now… ”

Hamilton claimed back-to-back British Grand Prix wins when he stormed to victory despite a torrid start at Silverstone.

The 30-year-old has claimed world title gold on the two previous occasions that he has won the Grand Prix and hopes that it is a good omen to spur him towards his third world title.

Lewis Hamilton

It could have been so different for Hamilton last weekend, however.

In pictures – British Grand Prix

British F1 Grand Prix
Lewis Hamilton celebrates his win on the podium with the trophy
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Despite being on pole position, the Williams duo of Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa shot off the line to send Hamilton down to third in the early stages.

But Hamilton was smart and intelligent in his tactics and eventually maneuvered his way back to the front of the field to claim a big win in front of the home fans.

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