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What is Lewis Hamilton's yearly salary?

Lewis Hamilton's £100 million three-year-deal with Mercedes makes him the highest paid British athlete as well as the highest paid F1 driver in the history

30 Sep 2015, 18:08 IST
Lewis Hamilton makes more in a year than Real Madrid's Gareth Bale! 

Lewis Hamilton has come a long way in the sport of Formula One, since his second-placed finish in the 2007 Formula One Championship with McLaren in his debut season.

Beginning with a £600,000 a year contract in his hands, Hamilton became the youngest player to lead the World Championship after 4 wins in his debut season (a record jointly held by him and Jacques Villeneuve ) and nine consecutive podium finishes, resulting in the most number of points in a debut season in 2007.

The 30-year-old won his first Formula One championship in 2008 and followed it up with another one six years later, before Mercedes AMG Petronas lined up to sign the 30-year-old on a three-year contract which was worth a reported £60m in 2013.

Hamilton would go on to earn a contract extension in 2015, improving his deal to a massive £33million-a-year ($50 million) whilst also extending his stay at Mercedes to 2018 to reflect his status as one of the best drivers in the world at the moment.

Contract specifics and comparison

The deal, said to be worth £100-million for three years, can potentially rise up to £140 million including bonuses, which means that Lewis Hamilton’s yearly salary can be anywhere in between £33 million-a-year to somewhere north of £45-million-a-year.

This makes him the best-paid sportsperson in the UK, dethroning Gareth Bale in the process. It also confirms that he is the best-paid F1 driver in the history of the sport, surpassing his rival and former champion Sebastian Vettel.

In terms of highest earning athletes in the world, only Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Floyd Mayweather earn more from their contracts than the Brit.

Hamilton has been associated with Mercedes since 1998

While most professional drivers command a lot of attention from the fans and press alike, they are bound to comply by their contract rules, which in most cases include non-participation in activities leading to hazardous/injurious consequences like rock climbing, snowboarding, parachuting, paragliding, etc.

The team also gains rights to the drivers images, name, fame, and reputation, whichever depicts him in track-wear, though few more established drivers like Hamilton reserve some rights for their own sponsors and deals. 

The Brit earned a cool £3 million when Mercedes had relaxed some of its constraints from his previous contract, which also brings about an unequality in the salaries paid to new drivers and those at the peak of their careers.

This contract also ensures that Hamilton will complete 20 years with Mercedes Benz in 2018, whom he signed with as a 13-year-old in the Young Driver Support Programme in 1998.

One of the most marketable athletes

Hamilton tied Ayrton Senna’s record of 41 wins after clinching the Japanese GP

With the most victories by any British F1 driver and tied at fourth with 41 wins for the all-time leading charts, Lewis Hamilton was ranked as the most marketable athlete of 2014 by UK’s SportsPro magazine.

Needless to say Mercedes are in for a long haul of monetary compensation coming their way.

Hamilton self-negotiated this contract with Mercedes and the result has been lauded by many of his peers and colleagues alike. He has been successful in marketing his brand after splitting up with his representatives XIX Entertainment.

Although his racing idol is Ayrton Senna, the contract negotiation tactics employed Hamilton were different as compared to the Brazilian’s.

This has ensured that he doesn’t lose money on his deals, unlike Senna, who had lost lost $1.5 million in his three-year-long contract with McLaren because his negotiations with coach Ron Dennis came to a conclusion with a coin toss.

Gearing up for his third championship this season, with a lead of 20 points over his teammate Nico Rosberg, the new contract comes as a huge boost to Hamilton’s self-confidence.

If he wins, then he’ll be joining the ranks of Ayrton Senna, Sir Jackie Stewart, Sir Jack Brabham, Niki Lauda and Nelson Piquet as the only five three-time World Champions so far. 

Update: Lewis Hamilton sealed his third championship by winning the 2015 US Grand Prix.

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