Toto Wolff
Lewis Hamilton approved Mercedes' appointment of Valtteri Bottas as Nico Rosber's replacement, says Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff Getty

Lewis Hamilton has approved of Mercedes' decision to appoint Valtteri Bottas as Nico Rosberg's replacement, says Toto Wolff.

The Finn was signed earlier in the month after the Silver Arrows Formula One team bought out his Williams contract to replace the German, who retired after winning the 2016 F1 Drivers' title. Hamilton welcomed him with a message on his official Twitter page: "Welcome to the Team, Valtteri!" the Briton said.

The Mercedes F1 motorsport boss is hoping the relationship between the two drivers will be easier to manage than the previous pairing. Rosberg and Hamilton endured a fractious relationship in recent seasons as they went head-to-head for the title, and Wolff believes it was more intense because they had a history of racing against each other since they were teenagers.

"Lewis said he thought Valtteri was a nice guy. One of the guys he actually got along with well in Formula 1 and he felt he was a good option," Wolff said, as quoted by BBC Sport.

"I think that works well. It was OK already between Nico and Lewis, but there was the luggage of the past... Now it is a completely new relationship and there is no animosity.

"There will be moments where it is going to be difficult, but I think that how the personalities are for the team it's going to be a good situation and one that is maybe a bit easier to handle than the past. But I could be wrong," he added.

Wolff also indicated that Bottas' future at the team will not be guaranteed beyond the 2017 season, as the team are going to keep their options open for 2018. Hamilton has a deal until the end of 2018, but Mercedes could change his teammate should the Finn fail to meet expectations.

Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso will be out of contract at the end of the year, and the Mercedes boss has admitted that they could be considered as possible options. However, he made it clear that the team signed Bottas keeping in mind a long-term association.

"We wouldn't have chosen Valtteri if we thought that he was not good enough to continue with the team," the Mercedes motorsport chief said.

"But, as a matter of fact, the market is very dynamic at the moment. Next year options open - young drivers, Sebastian, Fernando, Valtteri, many of them. So it is about understanding that - and Valtteri does.

"Equally we have great faith and confidence in him that he can stay with us for a long time, but now we need to see how the season goes," he explained.