Lewis Hamilton has long been known in Formula 1 for being the highest-paid driver on the grid; however, it’s believed that he lost this title to Max Verstappen.
Verstappen signed a long-term contract extension with Red Bull in 2022, with his deal lasting until the end of 2028.
It’s believed that his long-term contract sees him earn a base salary of $45 million, whilst he also received $25 million in performance-related bonuses, according to Forbes.
This is comfortably clear of every driver on the grid, except Hamilton.
Whilst Hamilton’s old deal saw him earn less than Verstappen, it’s rumoured that his new Mercedes contract for the next two seasons is worth more than the Dutchman’s.
Purely on F1 salary, it’s very close between the two drivers in regard to who earns the most, although it’s widely believed that Hamilton earns more than Verstappen when sponsorship is taken into consideration.
Verstappen does have plenty of sponsors like Heineken, EA Sports and ViaPlay, which reportedly earns him an additional $4 million.
Hamilton though, is sponsored by Monster Energy, Tommy Hilfiger, IWC and several others.
The Dutchman was actually asked if he earns more than the seven-time World Champion, with his answer having made him laugh.
“Maybe, I’m not sure,” Verstappen told The Times, whilst laughing.
Looking ahead to the upcoming 2024 F1 season, many fans are hoping to see Verstappen and Hamilton’s rivalry reignite, with the Dutchman having had no competition the last two years.
Hamilton taking the fight to the Red Bull driver largely depends on Mercedes delivering him a competitive car, as that’s what he needs to duel with Verstappen.
Hamilton has told Mercedes what he wants their 2024 car look like, with one of his issues last season having been how far forward the cockpit was.
If the Silver Arrows have performed wonders over the off-season then anything is possible, although to be able to beat Red Bull this year considering where they were last campaign is very unlikely.
Progress is possible, but Hamilton needs a Mercedes miracle to fight Verstappen to potentially claim an elusive eighth Drivers’ Championship.