Wolff calls in the police to investigate ‘upsetting’ email

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Mercedes F1 boss Toto Wolff has stepped forward to vehemently deny allegations of "systematic sabotaging" against Lewis Hamilton, following a disturbing email sent to F1 media and insiders.

Wolff confirmed that the Brackley squad had filed a police report with British authorities in a bid to trace and uncover the promoter of the troubling conspiracy theory.

The "upsetting" email, as Wolff described it, was sent on June 10th and targeted a mailing list of F1 media and insiders, mirroring a tactic used earlier this year to spread rumors about Christian Horner.

Labeled with the inflammatory subject line "a potential death warrant for Lewis," the email claimed to have been anonymously authored by a Mercedes employee and detailed supposed efforts to hinder Hamilton in favor of teammate George Russell.

It implicitly suggested that Mercedes is prioritizing Russell because of Hamilton's impending move to Ferrari in 2025. An SMS message containing similar accusations was also sent to some media representatives.

Wolff, speaking in Barcelona, categorically denied that the email had originated from within Mercedes and emphasized the seriousness with which the team is taking the matter.

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“It’s not from a member of the team,” commented the Austrian. “When we’re getting this kind of email, and we’re getting tons of them, it is upsetting, particularly when somebody talking about death and all these things.

“So, on this particular one, I have instructed to go on full force.

“We have the police enquiring it. We’re researching the IP address, we are researching the phone, all of that, because online abuse in that way needs to stop.

“People can’t hide behind their phones or their computers and abuse teams or drivers in a way like this.”

Addressing the outlandish allegation stating that Mercedes is purposefully favouring Russell to Hamilton’s detriment, Wolff suggested that anyone believing such an affirmation needed a “shrink”.

He also denounced the anonymous nature of the accusations and cowardice of online abusers.

“I don’t know what some of the conspiracy theorists and lunatics think out there,” he said.

“Lewis was part of the team for 12 years. We have a friendship, we trust each other. We want to end this on a high, we want to celebrate the relationship.

“And if you don’t believe all of that, you can believe that we want to win the constructors’ World Championship. And part of the constructors’ World Championship is making both cars win.

“So to all of these mad people out there, take a shrink.

“So first of all, I’m not reading any comments. I don’t have social media,” he continued.

“And I think it’s important to protect oneself by doing so. I’ve commented about this many times before. There will always be people there with the laptop on the chest in the bedroom, just typing away.

“If people feel like they want to abuse and hit and hide behind them, behind a made-up Instagram account, or anything else that. For me, come up and say who you are, and we’ll take the criticism and discuss – but don’t hide.

“And there seems to be lots of irrationality also because we want to be successful. We want to be successful with the most iconic driver the sport has ever had.

“We had the privilege that we had to work with Lewis as an incredible driver, great personality that goes through the ups and downs like any other like any other sports person. I totally respect the reasons for him going to Ferrari.

“There is no grudge. There is no bad feeling. The interaction we have in the team is positive, and so every comment from the outside of what is going on in the team is just simply wrong.”

Wolff stated in no uncertain terms that when it comes to online abuse, there should be zero tolerance as Mercedes’ decision to pursue legal action reflects.

“There’s always a limit,” he said. “I mean, if emails are being sent or telephone numbers are being used for these messages, then, for me, the joking stops, and we will pursue it, whether that is successful or not.

“But there are limits to certain things. And obviously, online abuse is not only something that happens to us or to the team or to the people. It happens badly to Lewis, and to George.

“And we’ve seen Max speaking out about it and Kelly [Piquet]. People that abuse are cowards because they hide.

“So whatever is going on out there with social media, with all the good things that it provides, and all those people that have been given a platform. That’s just the negatives that come with it. I have no feelings to someone that abuses for the reasons I just said before.”

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