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Mercedes wants Hamilton deal done before new season

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Toto Wolff has admitted he would like to agree a new deal with world champion Lewis Hamilton before the season begins.

The Briton remains under contract for the full 2015 season, but at the Jerez test recently he was spotted in intense negotiations with boss Wolff and team chairman Niki Lauda.

Last week, reports in Germany claimed 30-year-old Hamilton, who manages himself following his split from Simon Fuller’s XIX Entertainment, was on the cusp of agreeing a new multi-year deal.

Wolff has now told the PA Sport news agency that he would like to have ink on a contract before the new season begins in Australia in just over a month.

“It is always beneficial to have a clear situation, for the driver and ourselves,” said the Austrian.

“Therefore we should aim to finish the discussions before the start of the season.”

Wolff insisted, however, that he is not setting a firm deadline because “we don’t want to put him or us under pressure”.

But that doesn’t mean the talks are not going well, with Wolff confirming that “so far the discussions have been as expected”.

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