LEWIS Hamilton, current Formula One champion, on Wednesday, May 20, signed a new three-year contract at Mercedes that could be worth up to £27m a year. The 30-year-old Briton has been with the Mercedes team since 2013, after he had spent six years at McLaren. Hamilton won his second world title last year.
“I couldn’t be happier to be staying for another three years,” he said. The deal will keep him in the team until 2018. According to the new contract, Hamilton will earn a basic salary, paid in United States dollars, of $31 million or £20.9 million plus extensive bonuses.
Depending on how many races he wins, and whether he becomes world champion, these bonuses could easily take his annual earnings to more than over $40 million or £27 million annually.
Analysts say the overall value of Hamilton’s deal is similar to that of Fernando Alonso of McLaren and Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari, the two other big earners and multiple champions.
Since joining Mercedes, Hamilton – who won his first world title with McLaren in 2008 – has won 15 races, 11 of those coming as he beat Nico Rosberg, his team mate, to the 2014 title. He leads Rosberg by 20 points in the current championship. Hamilton has also won three of the first five races of this season. “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,” he said.
— Jun 1, 2015 @ 01:00 GMT