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Mercedes, F1 dismiss alleged Toto Wolff confidentiality breach with wife Susie Wolff as FIA launch investigation

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff and his wife Susie Wolff, F1 Academy managing director, are understood to be under investigation by the FIA: the sport's governing body is looking into "allegation of information of a confidential nature being passed" between the couple

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff (L) with his wife Susie Wolff, the managing director of F1 Academy
Image: Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff (L) and his wife Susie Wolff, the managing director of F1 Academy, are both key figures in the paddock

Formula 1 and Mercedes have denied allegations that the team's boss Toto Wolff and his wife, F1 Academy chief Susie Wolff, exchanged confidential information, after the FIA announced an investigation into the pair's conduct.

A statement released on Tuesday by Formula 1's governing body announced an investigation by its compliance department was under way, but did not identify the pair by name.

Wolff is employed by F1's commercial rights holder Formula One Management (FOM) as the managing director of its all-female series, reporting directly to F1 chief executive Stefano Domenicali.

A report published in Business F1 magazine had suggested a comment Mercedes boss Wolff made in a recent meeting of team principals triggered concerns among rivals he was receiving confidential information.

The FIA statement said: "The FIA is aware of media speculation centred on the allegation of information of a confidential nature being passed to an F1 team principal from a member of FOM personnel. The FIA Compliance Department is looking into the matter."

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Later on Tuesday evening, both F1 and Mercedes released statements, with the former claiming the FIA investigation was based upon "imprudent and serious allegations without substance".

Both appeared to be surprised by the fact they had not been contacted by the FIA before the release of the statement.

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A Mercedes statement said: "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.

"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.

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"As a matter of course, we invite full, prompt, and transparent correspondence from the FIA Compliance Department regarding this investigation and its contents."

Wolff, the last woman to drive in an F1 practice session, was appointed managing director of F1 Academy in March 2023 ahead of the all-female series' inaugural season.

An F1 statement said: "We note the public statement made by the FIA this evening that 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.

"We are confident that no member of our team has made any unauthorised disclosure to a team principal and would caution anyone against making imprudent and serious allegations without substance."

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