Lewis Hamilton has signed a new contract with Mercedes to continue driving for F1’s reigning world champions in 2019 and 2020.
“I’m very confident that Mercedes is the right place to be over the coming years. Although we have enjoyed so much success together since 2013, Mercedes is hungrier than ever,” said Hamilton.
The reigning F1 world champion had been due to become a free agent at the end of the year before putting to pen on an extension reputedly worth £40m annually.
If accurate, Hamilton’s new deal will maintain the 33-year-old’s status as the highest-paid British sportsman.
Along with Hamilton, Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso of McLaren are believed to be the highest-paid drivers in F1, although the exact figures are determined by various sponsorship and performance-related bonuses.
I have been in the Mercedes Family since 1998. I am forever grateful for their continued support, love and protection over these years. I’m incredibly proud of what we have achieved together and even more excited for the future!👊🏾 @MercedesAMGF1 #grateful #letsgo #announcelewis
“This contract extension has basically been a formality since Toto [Wolff] and I sat down during the winter, so it’s good to put pen to paper, announce it and then get on with business as usual. I have been part of the Mercedes racing family for 20 years and I have never been happier inside a team than I am right now,” said Hamilton.
Mercedes chief Wolff said at the British GP that the Silver Arrows wanted Hamilton – who has won three of his four titles at Mercedes since leaving McLaren in 2012 – for another five years, adding that the team were waiting “for the right time” for an announcement.
And the Anglo-German outfit have picked their second home race in Hockenheim – where Mercedes-Benz chairman Dieter Zetsche and other key executives will be present.