Toto Wolff could be taking over Norbert Haug’s role as motor sport director of Mercedes, according to Germany’s Bild newspaper.
Haug’s job encompasses the DTM and F3 as well as F1 and thus it makes some sense given that Wolff has long had a stake in HWA, the company that runs both programmes on behalf of Mercedes.
However as a co-owner of HWA he clearly would not be a direct replacement for Haug, given that the latter was a Mercedes employee.
It remains to be seen where such a role – if it does indeed include the Mercedes F1 programme – would leave Wolff’s involvement with Williams. The 41-year-Austrian acquired a stake in the team in November 2009 and was named executive director last year, having increased his day-to-day involvement with the team after the departure of Adam Parr.
“This is the moment where I was kind of pushed into a more active role,” he told this writer. “I stepped into some things Adam did, and this was basically helping Frank in sporting decisions, having a close relationship to the FIA and the commercial rights holder, supporting Claire [Williams] with our key sponsors, key partners.”
Until now he’s maintained his parallel shareholdings in HWA and Williams without problem, but logic suggests that a Mercedes job encompassing F1 would make a hands-on role with the Grove team untenable.