Seven-time Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton reportedly took a pay cut to continue racing for Mercedes in 2021. Hamilton earned a mammoth $40 million in 2020 through his salary. The season saw him equal Michael Schumacher's tally of seven world titles.
Hamilton was out of contract for the 2021 season, although many expected him to re-sign with the team that helped him win six of his seven world championships. With his market value at an all-time high after picking up his seventh title, it came as a shock when the Brit only signed a one-year extension with Mercedes. It has now been revealed that Hamilton took a pay cut as well.
How much has Lewis Hamilton's salary reduced?
Lewis Hamilton's previous salary was worth $40 million a year. The Brit earned close to $2 million per race last year after the season was shortened to 17 races. According to RaceFans.net, Hamilton's new one-year deal is priced at $30 million, which is a $10 million pay cut to his previous deal. The reduced figure can be attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic affecting the finances of Daimler-AG, the team's parent company. However, Lewis Hamilton will enjoy the bonus packages attached to his contract.
Another driver who has taken a pay cut this season is four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel. The German quit Ferrari to join Aston Martin for the 2021 season. According to the same report from RaceFans.net, Aston Martin are currently paying Vettel only half of his Ferrari salary from last season. However, both Lance Stroll and Sebastian Vettel are getting paid directly from Aston Martin and not the racing team.
Uncertainty looms over Hamilton's future in the sport. The seven-time world champion signing a mere one-year extension has raised a lot of eyebrows in the paddock. With Hamilton's shift in focus towards world issues, it will not come as a shock if he decides to call it quits in Formula 1.