Formula 1 – Lewis Hamilton signs new Mercedes deal ‘worth £100m’
Mercedes have announced that Lewis Hamilton has signed a new three-year contract worth a reported £100 million.
The reigning world champion’s protracted contract negotiations had been a major talking point during the 2015 season.
Hamilton‘s team-mate Nico Rosberg announced an extended deal last summer, but talks with Hamilton were paused during the 2014 title fight and then dragged on through the opening grands prix of this year.
But Hamilton has now come to an agreement with his team, with his new salary and reward package reportedly around the £100m mark over three years.
It marks a huge pay rise for Hamilton, who earned a reported £20m in 2014. That was still enough to put him to the top of British sport’s rich list last month, with an estimated net worth of £88m – and he seems certain to be even further ahead of second-placed Wayne Rooney by this time next year.
“Mercedes is my home and I couldn’t be happier to be staying here for another three years,” said Hamilton. “This is a company filled with real passionate racers, from the board room to the factory floor, and an incredible hunger to win.
“Even after the success of last year, that hunger is greater than ever – and it’s the same for me, too. The Mercedes car I am driving right now is the best I have ever had in my career; it’s just so much fun to be out there every weekend, on the limit and fighting to win at every track.
“Mercedes-Benz began supporting me in 1998 so I am very proud that this contract means I will mark 20 years with Mercedes in 2018.”
Lewis Hamilton leaves teammate Nico Rosberg in the background
Hamilton joined Mercedes for the 2013 season after spending his F1 career up to that point with the McLaren team that had nurtured him through junior racing.
The 30-year-old Briton has taken 15 grand prix wins since coming to Mercedes and added last year’s drivers’ crown to his 2008 title with McLaren.
He heads into this weekend’s Monte Carlo race with a 20-point lead over Rosberg in the standings.
Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport Toto Wolff continued: “Continuity is one of the key factors for delivering success in Formula One and we now have that in place. Lewis enjoyed an historic World Championship season with Mercedes-Benz last year and it was a priority for this season to renew his contract for the next term.