Lewis Hamilton: F1 Shouldn’t ‘Handicap’ Future Stars

The seven-time world champion is concerned about the proposed salary cap’s impact on future stars more than himself.

Earlier this season, all ten Formula One teams unanimously agreed in principle to set a $30 million combined salary cap for both drivers.

Speaking ahead of the grand prix this weekend in Bahrain, Lewis Hamilton said that while he isn’t opposed to the proposed cap, he is concerned that it could “handicap” future F1 stars.

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“I’m not personally opposed to it, but I do think about the next up and coming young stars that are coming through and I don’t particularly see why they should be handicapped if they’re bringing something huge to the sport,” Hamilton, the highest paid driver in Formula One, said.

As for the current crop of drivers, Hamilton doesn’t see why they should be limited either, saying: “They’re the ones that are seen, those are the ones that bring their brands and their reputation helps elevate the sport and help it travel globally around the world.”

Hamilton did acknowledge that salary caps currently exist in other sports but noted that there are key differences to take into account.

“I think the one difference is that those places the individuals own their image in many areas, then they can try to maximise their image elsewhere. This sport controls, pretty much, the driver’s image.”

He also indirectly addressed rumours that the salary cap is affecting his contract negotiations with Mercedes, saying: “I think currently the salary cap is supposed to be implemented probably when I’m not even here.”

The British driver wrapped us his seventh F1 title last time out at Istanbul, but his existing contract with Mercedes will expire at the end of this season and he is yet to ink a new deal for 2021 and beyond.

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