Lewis Hamilton signs new mega-money Formula 1 contract with Mercedes
F1 

Lewis Hamilton has signed a new mega-money deal to continue with Mercedes.

Hamilton has put pen to paper on a fresh deal for the 2021 season – rumoured to be worth in the region of £40million.

That's a £5million-a-year rise for the 35-year-old, who won a seventh Formula 1 world title in 2020 – equalling Michael Schumacher's record haul – and enjoyed another dominant season.

The new deal also marks a commitment from Mercedes and Hamilton to 'greater diversity and inclusion' in motorsport.

“I am excited to be heading into my ninth season with my Mercedes teammates," Hamilton said. "Our team has achieved incredible things together and we look forward to building on our success even further, while continuously looking to improve, both on and off the track.

“I’m equally determined to continue the journey we started to make motorsport more diverse for future generations and I am grateful that Mercedes has been extremely supportive of my call to address this issue.

"I’m proud to say we are taking that effort further this year by launching a foundation dedicated to diversity and inclusion in the sport. I am inspired by all that we can build together and can’t wait to get back on the track in March.”

Mercedes chief Toto Wolff added: “We have always been aligned with Lewis that we would continue, but the very unusual year we had in 2020 meant it took some time to finish the process.

"Together, we have decided to extend the sporting relationship for another season and to begin a longer-term project to take the next step in our shared commitment to greater diversity within our sport.

"Lewis’s competitive record stands alongside the best the sports world has ever seen, and he is a valued ambassador for our brand and our partners.

"The story of Mercedes and Lewis has written itself into the history books of our sport over the past eight seasons, and we are hungry to compete and to add more chapters to it.”

With his contract drawing to a close at the end of 2020, Hamilton had made clear his desire to remain with Mercedes, whom he joined in 2013, and with whom he has won six of his seven world titles.

After finishing third at the season-ending race in Abu Dhabi last weekend following his recovery from coronavirus, Hamilton said he wanted his future to be resolved before Christmas.

“I plan to be here next year, he said. "I want to be here next year. I think we as a team have more to do together and more to achieve, both in the sport but even more outside it."

It will be the final big-money contract of its kind in F1, with a salary cap set to be enforced from 2022.

Mercedes have also confirmed that Wolff will remain as team boss and chief executive for the next three years, following the ownership restructure.

Ineos, owned by Britain's richest man Sir Jim Ratcliffe, became a team partner at the start of this year and have now increased their stake to 33 percent.

Wolff has enhanced his 30 percent stake to 33 percent also, while Daimler, who owned a 60 percent stake previously, have come down to 33 percent, to create three equal partners.

"I am pleased to begin this new chapter for the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team,” said Wolff.

“This team is like a family for me. We have been through so many highs and lows together that I cannot imagine working with a better group of people in this sport – and I am very happy to continue together into this new era.

“This new investment from INEOS confirms that the business case for Formula One teams is robust and sends an important signal of confidence in the sport after a challenging year.

"I am excited to welcome Jim, Andy and John to the team as co-owners: they have built one of the most profitable companies in the world, they embody the true spirit of entrepreneurship and their expertise will strengthen our board in the years ahead.

“In parallel, it is a privilege to continue my partnership with Ola, Markus Schäfer and Mercedes-Benz for the coming years.

"We are proud to have added to the brand's prestigious motorsport heritage since 2010 and we share the ambition to grow the organisation further in the years to come."

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