It seems the entire F1 paddock has been blindsided by the news of the FIA’s investigation into Mercedes team principal, Toto Wolff, and F1 Academy boss, Susie Wolff. It’s prompted strong denials from F1, Mercedes, and Susie Wolff.
The FIA compliance department is looking into “information of a confidential nature being passed to an F1 team principal from a member of FOM personnel,” according to a statement.
The organisation acknowledged that it is “aware of media speculation” surrounding the allegation but didn’t specify as to what.
It is believed, but not confirmed, that the FIA is reacting to complaints made by other team principals over information that could be shared by Toto to his wife, Susie.
Unsubstantiated concerns have been raised over Toto potentially having access to confidential details regarding FOM activities, while Susie may have information discussed strictly between F1 team bosses.
Mercedes have made their confidence in Wolff’s innocence clear and revealed that they were only informed of the investigation through the FIA’s statement.
“We note the generic statement from the FIA this evening, which responds to unsubstantiated allegations from a single media outlet, and the off-record briefing which has linked it to the Team Principal of Mercedes-AMG F1,” read the statement.
“The Team has received no communication from the FIA Compliance Department on this topic and it was highly surprising to learn of the investigation through a media statement.
“We wholly reject the allegation in the statement and associated media coverage, which wrongly impinges on the integrity and compliance of our Team Principal.”
Susie Wolff said she was “deeply insulted but sadly unsurprised” by the allegations which she has also rejected “in the strongest possible terms.”
She continued that it was “disheartening that my integrity is being called into question in such a manner, especially when it seems to be rooted in intimidatory and misogynistic behaviour, and focused on my marital status rather than my abilities.”
Formula 1 itself released a statement acknowledging the FIA’s statement and echoed Mercedes’ own as it was “not shared with us in advance.”
“We have complete confidence that the allegations are wrong, and we have robust processes and procedures that ensure the segregation of information and responsibilities in the event of any potential conflict of interest.”