Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Sochi Autodrom, 2020

Hamilton and Mercedes finally announce new deal for 2021 season

2021 F1 season

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Lewis Hamilton’s long-awaited new deal to drive for Mercedes in the 2021 F1 season has finally been confirmed.

Mercedes announced a single-year contract extension which will see the seven-times world champion return to drive for them as he bids to become the first person in the sport’s history to win eight titles.

“I am excited to be heading into my ninth season with my Mercedes team mates,” said Hamilton. “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.”

Valtteri Bottas signed a one-year contract extension with Mercedes last year and will continue as Hamilton’s team mate.

Under Hamilton’s new deal, he and Mercedes will collaborate on a charitable foundation to promote diversity and inclusion across motorsport.

“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,” said Hamilton.

Drivers, Circuit de Catalunya, 2020
2021 F1 drivers and teams
“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 CEO and team principal Toto Wolff said the complications caused by the pandemic – both he and Hamilton have contracted and recovered from Covid-19 within the past three months – delayed the signing of a new agreement.

“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,” he said. “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.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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131 comments on “Hamilton and Mercedes finally announce new deal for 2021 season”

  1. This is the only article on this I can see on any of my (four) go-to F1 sites- at 11:03.

    I have no doubt it will prove to be right- but out of interest, what’s the source?

      1. Oh yeah…

        I suppose what I mean’t to say was- good trigger finger!

    1. I got it about 10 ago in the official F1 app time posted 11:10

  2. Dutchguy (@justarandomdutchguy)
    8th February 2021, 11:05

    Well, that’s this anti-climax out of the way

    1. @Bones Gambino Probably so that he can re-evaluate his motivation to continue beyond this year, and also possible to keep an option open for a Bottas-Russell line up should he decided to quit after this year’s campaign.

      1. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
        8th February 2021, 12:21

        Mercedes are dead set on Russell for 2022. Giving in to Lewis’ demands of a multi year deal and teammate veto was not going to happen.

        1. @sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk Mercedes insisted on a 3 year deal, but Hamilton didn’t want to commit that long. The rumor about the veto is just that, a random rumor.

          1. @f1osaurus What’s your source for this supposed 3 year deal?

          2. Sounds like you got it the other way around. Why would Merc push for a multi-year deal with someone that’s closer to the end of their career, than with someone that’s at the start, i.e. George.

          3. @psynrg That would be racefans. Article here on the site in October with quotes from Hamilton that he does not want to sign for that long.

          4. @F1osaurus
            Hahaha, you never seize to amaze me with your lies.
            You know literally nothing about the negotiations between Lewis and Mercedes, nor are you capable to deduct anything from previous statements.
            Lies, lies and more lies, that’s all you bring to the table.

          5. @f1osaurus I’d heard it was Hamilton that wanted the longer term deal but Mercedes weren’t comfortable with it. But as none of us were party to the negotiations, who knows.

          6. @chrisr1718 Yes that’s how people making up rumors works. Even though Hamilton already said months ago that he wasn’t looking for a 3 year deal. I assume he was party in the negotiations. Makes sense to take his word over some rumors.

          7. @f1osaurus That’s the logical scenario. Presuming Mercedes continue in F1, it makes more sense for them to want Hamilton on a longer contract, assuring them of a top driver during the adaptation to the new regulations, and much more sense for Hamilton, given his leverage, to want just one year. That puts pressure on Mercedes to offer something good for 2022 and onwards, allows Hamilton to assess options, including a career away from F1, or more likely, if he still enjoys racing as he seems to, for another team. Of course Mercedes probably will sign Russell whatever and may he’s good enough to lead the team. I suspect so. But still Mercedes (and Hamilton) could go with both of them at the team with Bottas dropping out.
            So, yeah, I’d presume it was Hamilton wanting one year only that was the sticking point.

          8. @f1osaurus “Yes that’s how people making up rumours works.”

            Lol rich coming from you. I’ve looked at the October article from this site that you refer to. Perhaps you could provide direct quotes from it to support you point. And I don’t mean that you should just do your usual and tell me to go read it myself. I have. And I can’t see anything that supports your rumour mongering.

            Says you…”Mercedes insisted on a three year deal”…Ok show us the proof of that.

            Says you…”quotes from Hamilton that he does not want to sign for that long”…Ok show us those direct quotes.

            Says you…”even though he said months ago that he wasn’t looking for a 3 year deal” Again just show us the quotes then that directly say that, and not your vague memory of some words he used that you then shaped into your own narrative like people won’t fact check you on this stuff.

            “Makes sense to take his word over some rumours.” Ok then why don’t you use his words accurately rather than inaccurately, because that causes you to then start the very rumours you seem to decry.

          9. @f1osaurus
            ““When we do sit down, normally we plan in three-year periods. But of course, we’re in a different time.

            “Do I want to continue for three years? That’s also a question; there are many, many questions still to be answered.”

            This is the exact quote from the “Hamilton – Mercedes – article”. Actually, Hamilton said they didn’t even sit down togheter, so yeah, making up facts as you go.

          10. @robbie No proof of anything as yet, beyond the existence of a one year contract. However those quotes from Hamilton did suggest to many people in those distant times (October) that maybe Hamilton was thinking about quitting F1. I thought it sounded like contract leverage – and Mercedes didn’t wilt. Even so, it signalled Hamilton was OK with walking away after one year. But what would Mercedes really want? A three-year contract and to pay as little as possible, surely. They always play safe. It’s a huge company with lots of people dependent on the team’s success. Hamilton is commercial revenue and a 7x current champion. Obviously he’s the best option. But he is more likely to want 1 year and then decide (again) or 3 years and a lot of cash – to make up for being tied to a team for two extra years he can’t know will produce a good car for 2022+. Hence the one year solution.

          11. @david-br I just don’t see it quite the same way. It starts with that I don’t see LH and Mercedes playing hard ball with each other, staring each other down until someone ‘wilts.’ Nor needing nor applying ‘contract leverage.’ They don’t have their lawyers sat on opposite sides of the negotiating table lobbing grenades at each other to see who can squeeze the most out of whom, imho. You speak of LH being leery of being “tied to a team for two extra years he can’t know will produce a good car for 2022+. Hence the one year solution.”

            Rather, I just think LH and Mercedes are family through and through. I think LH isn’t playing hard ball nor is Mercedes. I think they genuinely just ran out of time to suss out the details of the LH/Mercedes marriage going forward, not because they are in some staring contest or what have you, but simply because there is a lot they want to do together not just regarding LH’s remaining years in F1, but things to do with the global direction Mercedes wants to go in terms of the environment and social justice.

            LH isn’t going anywhere. He will finish his driving career in F1 at Mercedes. He is not holding out to see what the 2022 car will be like. He doesn’t have time nor the desire, imho, to go elsewhere and start anew. And where better even if he did have the time and the motivation? Imho he will be driving at Mercedes at least through 2023, and he doesn’t need to see what the 2022 car will be like. It will be a car that will have been built with them (his family) having tonnage of data on him, and it will afford him every bit the opportunity any other team or car would, except that they’re intimate with him, and he them, and they will finish off LH’s F1 driving career, whenever that will be, together.

            So you see I just think much has already been decided. The main stuff. I think they know they will be together until LH is done driving in F1, and the rest is just the semantics.

          12. @robbie Spoken like a true Hamilton fan XD
            A lot of that sounds very likely indeed. Still, there’s no reason for them to have the same vision of the future and that implies that what they want in any contract will diverge. Obviously that can be negotiated amicably. ‘They’ in the ‘Mercedes’ case is quite a complex creature with multiple parties and interests. Personally I hope for something more exciting than another three years of Hamilton/Mercedes, especially if the 2022 car is as good. But maybe I’m just projecting what I’d like to see happen (Hamilton move to another team, Mercedes not to be the top car again, other drivers in contention in as near equal fight as possible). Maybe your version of what will happen is right though, Hamilton completes his career in a few years time at Merc.

        2. You were privy to the details of what either side wanted then? I seriously doubt it. Rumour disguised as fact. Nobody, except the persons involved, knows what was requested from Lewis or Mercedes.

          1. Exactly. Hopefully, you’ve dismissed the daft ‘veto rumour as well

        3. That’s exactly how I read it too, they want George in 2022 no matter what. Lewis can play along or call it quits as both parties have achieved more than their wildest dreams already.

          Another give away is Merc and Lewis have probably been talking about the contract for at least 6 months just to end up with a 12 month extension? lol

    2. Yeah, I think this means the parties were basically unhappy with the terms. I just don’t see any party beng happy with one year.

      I’m looking forward to more detail.

    3. Obviously, Lewis wants out before RB or Ferrari get up to speed, if they ever do.
      He knows he’s got one more season of absolute and utter Merc domination. After that he may well have to compete. Yes, compete. Wow: That’s something he has not had to do for years and years now: he just gets in the car and wins.

    4. Sure. At his age he probably has to ask himself each year if he wants to continue and I’d imagine Mercedes are thinking the same thing. Remember, racing has been the focus of his life since he was quite young, so it’s not a stretch to think that he may now be asking himself if it’s time for a new focus/challenge.
      He may also be questioning if he wants to go through the process of developing a new car from scratch (relatively speaking) again, dealing with all the issues etc, that come from the process.

    5. Probably because of the Budget cap rules of 2022….just my guess.

    6. Because he doesn’t want to go up against a Verstappen or Russell in 2022. He’ll sign up again for 2022 if Bottas or another patsy is his teammate.

    7. One year to many. They should go with Russel. Anyway, mark my words. Next year Russel is in Mercedes and the question is will it be Hamilton or Bottas that will have to go away.

  3. Shame. I was kinda hoping at this point they’d just fall apart and Hamilton had to sign with Arrows instead.

  4. Finally announced before car launches are set to start.

  5. One year. So Mercedes blinked first?

    Puts them in a slightly more difficult position for the rule changes in 2022, unless they can persuade Hamilton to sign again.

    1. I would have thought that Hamilton blinked first as he would be more likely to push for a multi-year deal.

      Or, just as likely, there was a whole lot of other stuff going on behind the scenes and contract length was not a sticking point!

      1. Part of the deal is a joint charitable foundation between Hamilton and Mercedes. So that looks like the Brand Ambassador role for the long term future.

      2. Mercedes definitely blinked first. They now have no drivers contracted in 2022, so how or who are they going to develop a car for the 2022 regs?

        1. I hardly think they are going to struggle to hire a driver…

          1. +1 or more.

        2. Yeah. It doesn’t make any sense not having a single driver for the new regulation. Unless Mercedes knew they won’t be there as a constructor. And give Ineos more freedom to build the team.

        3. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
          8th February 2021, 12:19

          No Hamilton blinked first.
          He wanted a multi year deal and a veto on his teammate.

          Mercedes are dead set on Russell for 2022, so this way they can get what they want. When they sign Russell for 2022. Then Lewis will have no choice but have Russell as his team mate or leave Mercedes.

          1. @sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk You are living in your own world mate. Mercedes was pushing for at least 2 years. Read the past news.

          2. @sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk Already in October Hamilton indicated he did not want to sign for 3 years “Hamilton unsure if he wants another three years at Mercedes”

            The contract supposedly also has an option for an extension that Hamilton can call.

          3. Another who believes everything they read elsewhere

            As @brum55 points out. It makes no sense for Mercedes to have two drivers out of contract at the end of this season. And it makes less sense when you consider one of them is Bottas

            Plus of course they’re going to give the man who’s just delivered them 6 titles in his 7 years, a one year deal!!

          4. So with brand new regulations in 2022, you think Mercedes are completely relaxed about a possible 8 x WDC going to a rival team and then rely on Russell to help develop the car in season?

          5. @f1oclown
            Supposedly he wanted a 5 year contract, supposedly he wanted a veto on his teammate, supposedly he wanted a piece of Merc’s team income……..blablabla.
            You know nothing!

          6. @f1osaurus You do realize don’t you that “Hamilton unsure if he wants another three years at Mercedes” is the title of the article, right? Not a quote from LH.

            Please provide the quote from LH himself where he says, according to you, “he did not want to sign for 3 years…”

            As well how about including the quotes that say “the contract supposedly has an option for an extension that Hamilton can call.”

          7. @robbie You do realize that you could actually read his quotes?

            Or just get back under your bridge, useless troll.

          8. @f1osaurus Ah yes your usual highly predictable and highly intelligent response when you can’t support your erroneous claim with actual quotes when asked to. Such a Trumpian thing to do from a Trumposaurus. Even when I asked you further up on this page not to just tell me to read it myself and when I have pointed out to you that I have already read your cited article and would like you to point out the exact quotes that support your claim, you still do the same thing over and over again. You’re special. Please don’t have kids.

          9. @robbie Get lost troll. Stop wasting upstanding people’s time with your nonsense.

        4. Every driver in the world.

          Verstappen has an out in his contract, RBR becoming a customer team, I think Verstappen now clearly in the box seat to driver the Merc in 2022.

          Hamilton wanted a big multi-year deal with veto power but Daimler denied him.

          1. A driver doesn’t need an out clause in his contract. Not saying they don’t exist though. If a driver no longer wants to drive for a team, they can’t exactly force him into the cockpit, and even if they could, that wouldn’t exactly be the setting within which he would excel. Contracts can be broken at any time and it is ‘simply’ then a matter of one party or another having to pay up to buy the contract out, whichever direction we are talking about. In the case of Perez, he had two more years on his contract with (now) AM, so they would have had to fork over no small amount of coin to release him. If Max wants out of RBR early, he’ll have to pay them. Unless of course there is an out clause that would apply specifically to the situation, such that he wouldn’t have to pay anything, but I think you get my point. A driver doesn’t need an out clause in order to leave a team before his contract is up, if he simply decides he no longer wants to driver wherever it is he is driving and is willing to bring out his cheque book to prove it. If it were Max we’re talking about, I’m sure his new team would pick up any tab owed to, in this case RBR, for him jumping out of his contract, as part of his new signing deal.

  6. So, one year only, one season for someone to earn that seat or, two drivers to earn those seats if Bottas isn`t careful.

  7. One year only? I don’t know what happens behind the doors, but this is a bit odd.

  8. I’m so happy that Hamilton has been able to find a job. He’s been struggling so much since he became unemployed 5 weeks ago. Shame it’s a part-time job on the weekends only though.

    1. Yes, I agree. The system was against him, actually all along it has been. He is so underprivileged I think we should raise some funds for him

      1. He’s clearly been discriminated against throughout his career. The worst car, the lowest pay, never given a chance to voice his opinions in a public fashion. Perhaps we’re finally seeing a turnaround in his fortunes.

  9. The single year contract implies everyone who was talking about him having a teammate clause is completely wrong. No point in having a teammate clause if you’re not going to be there the following year! As much as I’d miss watching him race, I’d like to see to him get the 8th this year and go out on the high, the success won’t last forever and better to go out on a high

    1. How does that make them wrong, exactly? If anything the 1-year-contract implies that whatever demands he had they couldn’t agree with and they ended up making a short-term deal instead.

    2. Not conclusive. Not that I think it’s likely but this could be the reason the contract is good for a year only, while Bottas is still there, there might be a disagreement about the teammate veto afterwards

    3. The single year contract implies everyone who was talking about him having a teammate clause is completely wrong.

      I thought it referred only to the duration of the contract, implying it doesn’t include 2022.

      1. @coldfly I know it’s hard to understand if you only want to try and seem funny, but if he’s only got a contract for 2021, how much influence would that give him for who drives the car in 2022?

        1. ‘Try’ being the operative word. To be honest people like him would shout ‘greedy’ if he’d got a 3 year deal and now they do it because he got 1. COldfly and Dean F and others hover round Lewis boards ready to pounce on anything he does. If they want to spend their lives doing that its up to them I guess. Seems incredibly dull, certainly dull to plough through to get to a decent conversation.

          1. him

            ??

            I’m actually quite positive towards Hamilton, especially his performance and achievements. Just check my comments on this site.
            It seems though that my criticism of many of your comments has had some impact.
            Thank you.

        2. Better try to be funny and fail than being stubborn without recognising it, @f1osaurus.

          Maybe the one year contract is the result of wanting a team mate clause (and not getting it) rather than proof that it never existed. But it takes an open mind to see that possibility.
          Either way, I don’t know and you will never have seen me speculating on this (except for the above).

          1. @coldfly Hamilton has always insisted he has no team mate clause or veto in his contracts, and pointed at other drivers by contrast. So it would be something of a turnabout – and one that he knows would bite him in the future. Of course he can still have a big say in who drivers alongside him. If it’s true that it’s a one year contract with Hamilton able to extend if he wants, then I guess he can just walk away if who he wants as a team mate doesn’t happen. Personally I think the latter involves too much speculation and presumption. Maybe Hamilton would relish a closer fight next year. In pure racing (adrenalin) terms, I think so. Or maybe his cautious side would decide that potentially losing would do his legacy more harm than good. If he can lose to Rosberg, for whatever reasons, of course he could to MV or GR, for example. No shame in that. Indeed the same applies to them the other way round. But he must look at Vettel’s career downward spiral and wonder.

          2. @f1oclown
            How typical: cornered by your own lies, no rebuttal so all that is left is another meaningless comment.

          3. @david-br

            Hamilton has always insisted he has no team mate clause or veto in his contracts, and pointed at other drivers by contrast.

            Then it’s his usual lying hypocrisy again: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2016/dec/15/lewis-hamilton-f1-mercedes-valtteri-bottas-fernando-alonso-williams

          4. @balue You’re confusing Hamilton expressing his preference and Hamilton having a legal clause in his contract allowing him a veto on team mates. Obviously any team will consult it’s lead driver to sound out their reaction and decide, for themselves, what would be best for the team. Hamilton warning about Alonso is hardly controversial given Red Bull (and Mercedes) have reportedly turned him down for being too abrasive in terms of team dynamics. But if Hamilton does have a clause, yes, that would be hypocritical.

          5. @david-br Seems you’re confusing or deliberately forgetting what you just claimed. Which is it?

            Hamilton has always insisted he has no team mate clause

          6. Really @balue ? read it again.

          7. Hamilton has always insisted he has no team mate clause or veto in his contracts, and pointed at other drivers by contrast.

            I don’t have a clue if Hamilton ever requested such a clause, and I would therefore never claim anything regarding that.
            In this case I merely reacted to other comments claiming that the 1 year deal is proof that those discussions/requests never happened. Such a claim (that it’s proof) is of course extremely short-sighted or at least endearingly innocent. Very few people really know what happened, what was requested, and why there is only a 1 year deal.

            PS I personally think Hamilton is enough of a racer and knows his own strength that he’d love to have a duel with the strongest opponents (currently Verstappen) in the same car. He seems to be smart guy, and knows that beating Verstappen will do more to his legacy than beating Bottas.
            PPS I really want to see Hamilton move to Ferrari before it’s too late and prove there what he can do. There are not many F1 racers who have won with 3 (or more) different teams. And if he can help Ferrari turn around (after Alonso and Vettel failed to do so) then that would be a major coup.
            PPPS I don’t think Hamilton needs a 1 year deal to keep his retirement options open (we saw that Rosberg could retire from a running contract without consequences from Mercedes). If Hamilton though wants to move to Ferrari after achieving 8/100/100 then he does need options after this year.

          8. @coldfly In agreement with all points, including wanting to see Hamilton move to Ferrari.

  10. One year only… that opens up oh-so-many possibilities.

    In 2022, Hamilton to: retire/Ferrari/Red Bull/stick with Mercedes; Verstappen to Mercedes… etc.

    1. Verstappen to Mercedes doesnt make sense. Do you want to have another line of boring seasons? Get Russel in Merc, and then have Leclerc, Russel and Verstappen clash in top teams.

      1. If Hamilton did leave Mercedes, I’m not sure that Toto would be happy heading into 2022 with Russel as the lead driver. He may turn out to be box-office, but it would be a punt to a certain extent. And if Hamilton went to another team, that would only be the more so IMO.

        I’m not saying any of these ideas will happen. But simply put, a one-year deal opens up an intriguing number of possibilities that will be debated well into 2021. Most likely it is Hamilton being savvy, wanting to have either the choice of teams for the new regulations, or the choice of retirement if he bagged the record taking eight world title in 2021.

        But as for today’s announcement, the obvious bet would have been Hamilton signing for a new multi-year deal with Mercedes, and that hasn’t happened. So, and by way of example- stranger things have happened before than that Hamilton will be wearing red or blue in 2022.

        1. Imagine if Lewis leaves Merc in 2022 and George comes in and starts winning championships straight away, eating away at Lewis’s legacy
          and his record titles, humbling him in the process.

          1. They said the same when Hamilton left McLaren. McLaren would be winning championships with Button and Perez. While Hamilton was destined never to win a championship again at Mercedes. Perez turned out to be a dud and Button showed he couldn’t pull a team.

        2. I’m declaring it now. Verstappen and Russell in the Mercs for 2022.

      2. Verstappen to Mercedes doesnt make sense

        Nothing makes more sense as it neuters the threat from Red Bull while getting a top driver for yourself. Especially for continuity’s sake now. Maybe equal owner Ineos wants to ensure wins for the future, and doesn’t share in Wolff and Hamilton’s ‘auld lang syne’.

    2. @alloythere The one year deal opens up so many more questions.

      How early in the year will Hamilton get asked about potential retirement in 2022? or speculation about who might replace him? Surely he gets asked before the first race this year.

      1. Absolute latest- first race Thursday interviews.

  11. Roth Man (@rdotquestionmark)
    8th February 2021, 11:23

    This anti climax was always coming but the one year deal is certainly interesting. All the rumours seemed to be over a 2 year deal. Tabloid thinking but I wonder if the agreement was stalling over a 2 year deal and this was just a stop gap agreement? There definitely seems to have been some unrest over this one, possibly over the driver veto rumours. I think this may be Lewis’s last season before a reschuffle with Mercedes drivers.

  12. Kind of disappointing, but not unexpected.

  13. I wonder if this will be a year where Hamilton rallies for causes with the tribune of F1 and then next year working full time for those causes.

  14. Maybe ntn is certain after 2021. For merc and for lewis. All depending on new rules etc. Maybe lewis thinking of retirement as some1 mentioned? Maybe…

  15. This is great stuff for 2022. Fireworks in the making as the cars will be different and key drivers will switch teams.

  16. I had a feeling he wouldn’t be willing to risk his reputation with the potential of a less dominant 2022 car.

    1. Why would he be concerned with that? He already said he would have remained a one-time champion had he stuck with McLaren. Schumacher also wanted to continue racing after the end of Ferrari dominance but also struggled with contract terms around that time.

  17. Maybe Toto has already decided on his 2022 drivers. George Russell and the WDC.

      1. Could well be. And that’s the dilemma. Three drivers to pick from; Ham, current WDC Bottas, or out of contract Russell?

  18. Finally, although this was always a formality, I never doubted to any extent at any point.

  19. I wouldn’t be surprised if Hamilton was holding out for a one year contract all along, whereas Mercedes wanted to tie him down for longer. I suspect Lewis wants to beat Schumi’s eight and then go.

    1. You mean beat Schuey’s 7th. I hope the Ferraris, Red bulls and McLarens take away his chances :)

  20. Well that’s a bit of a surprise, going on what Hamilton has said I believed he’s sign for two years. So Verstappen is out of contract in 2023 but I have read he has an out clause he can use at the end of 2021. Or will Merc bring Russell in hoping he can fill Hamiltons shoes? The speculation could divert from the racing on track.

  21. Either way should be a pretty interesting season.

    1. I agree, Merc team won’t have an easy year like the last, esp. with McLaren finding their pace and now with a Merc powertrain. Also red bull now have a formidable driver pairing and hope Ferraris join the top 3.

  22. Quite sad as an F1 fan to see a one-year deal, as (to me) it really highlights how close to the end of his career Hamilton probably is. He doesn’t strike me as a driver who’ll hang around for the sake of hanging around if his powers have diminished, and next year he’ll be 37. Even someone with his ability can only go on beyond his peak for so long.

    Never nice to think of the idea a great is close to retirement.

  23. Herberto Quaresma
    8th February 2021, 12:41

    Information emerged today that shows that the agreement between Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes is reached, but with a contract that contemplates only one year of connection with another option.
    He will reportedly be paid around 40 million euros and, as part of the new agreement, the seven-time Formula 1 World Champion will now have private advertising space on his helmet and in his racing suit.
    Much has been said recently, especially of values ​​of around 50 million euros per year and three years of contract, but apparently the agreement is only one year, with another option in favor of English. Hamilton will probably intend to remain at the start of the new F1 era in 2022, but it has long been said that English will hardly stay another three years in F1. There is also talk of a veto clause for possible teammates, something that has not been seen in F1 for some time.
    This means, if confirmed, that if Mercedes intends to exchange Valtteri Bottas for George Russell in 2022 … Hamilton decides.

    1. what does ‘English’ mean in the context of your comment?

      You seem to know the detail of a contract that isn’t in the public domain? All looks like planet f1 conjecture with some ‘facts’ bolted onto that

      1. @tonymansell I guess Herberto means ‘the English driver’ (“o inglês”).
        If there’s indeed an extension option for one side, Hamilton, then that does indicate that the contract is more in Hamilton’s favour. Would or could there be a clause on Hamilton’s team mate (Wolff’s denial notwithstanding)? I don’t know – it’s possible Hamilton wouldn’t want Verstappen alongside him. It would certainly be a much closer battle. If Hamilton still won, you could say the ‘visuals’ work both ways: showing how much easier it was versus Bottas, but also proving he can match and better the best of the rest. If he loses a close battle, the same should apply – but we all know it won’t. It will damage Hamilton’s reputation disproportionately, maybe as his own bettering of Alonso did to Alonso. So… Still, I’m not sure he’d want such a clause for pride’s sake. At some point in the future, it would become public knowledge. Easier for Hamilton simply to drop out of the team if Mercedes do sign Verstappen. Unless he really wants that challenge – always possible too! But I don’t think he can anticipate what he’ll be thinking by the end of this season.

  24. I’m glad to see Hamilton will be back. An athlete only gets so many years at the top. It is sad to see them sitting out.

    Plus, F1 just be the same without him.

  25. I read this as Lewis summoning up the effort to go for a eighth and final title, after which he’ll retire if achieved.

  26. I know some of the grumpier fans were looking forward to the power vacuum that Hamilton’s absence would create, but with that inevitability approaching closer with every year, I say wait it out and enjoy seeing just how far the most successful driver will go. He won’t be around for much longer.

    Not to mention we are yet to see a true title battle between himself and one of the younger guys (Verstappen, Leclerc, etc) and that is something I’m sure we would all like to see before he goes. 2006 always stands out as one of the most memorable seasons of my time, mainly because it was a symbolic moment of the greatest driver of his generation bowing out, being defeated by the man who stole his crown.

    No doubt it’ll help Hamilton’s legacy if his does quit while he’s on top, but I for one would love for him to stick around until he’s well and truly defeated.

    1. Schumacher was still at alonso level around 2006, and had he stayed I’m pretty sure he’d have won the next 2 titles at ferrari, mathematical models say so as well. Whether the reason, for burocracy or whatever he decided to retire in 2006, but he was still very fast and could’ve definitely got a couple of titles, certainly brought a better challenge than raikkonen or massa did. What I would like for hamilton is a season at least with a fair challenge car-wise, something like 2018, where only vettel’s incredible streak of mistakes made it seem a walkover for hamilton.

  27. Both of the drivers at the preeminent team on a one-year deal? Looking forward to this next silly season ahead of the new regs.

    1. Silly season for next year has already started – before this season has even begun 🙄

  28. The one year deal does strike me as a little odd. I think it suggests that Merc probably wanted longer but Hamilton, in the circumstances was not willing to commit on the terms offered, so they just agreed on one year for now.

    I say this because I would find it very unlikely that Merc would want to go into 2022 with no contracted drivers.

    I don’t think for one minute this is because Merc are dead set on having Russell in the team in 2022. I don’t imagine Lewis would be worried by the propect like some seem to suggest.

    1. Maybe its so its more attractive to buyers in the event Mercedes further sell off their F1 involvement, akin to when Williams dropped their title sponsor ahead of the new firms takeover. Would allow any new owners to spend their money how they see fit, sans obligations? Especially if Ham is wanting mega money, with a car already capable of being bolted to the front of the field.

  29. This reads to me like a compromise, as though the larger objective from both sides wasn’t agreed and instead they’ve both accepted that a one-year deal is best all-round.

    1. Hamilton has held out on Merc for at least 6 months.

      You don’t hold out for a one year contract.

      My guess is that Hamilton got the money he wanted, but not the length of contract and didn’t get veto power.

      We’ll see anyway because no team in its right mind will retain Bottas in 2022.

  30. While the contract continuation may have been a formality between Lewis and Mercedes, the one year contract and the various stipulations indicates potentially that Lewis is at a point that he is considering his options after Formula 1, not to mention the potential risk of staying with Mercedes beyond 2021, with new rules and an enforced developmental convergence over the next generation of cars (as previously detailed).

    I would think too, that Mercedes would have been less willing to meet any significant increase in salary, especially given the reduction in staffing across the broader Mercedes business. Furthermore, a succession plan would need to be considered for the future drivers (eg: George Russell) to join the team. From Mercedes perspective, this may not need to involve Lewis Hamilton. It may also provide the potential for Mercedes to prepare to scale back its involvement in Formula 1, considering its achievements over the last 11 year

    A mutual agreement to wait-and-see, especially since 2021 is a sort of a holding year, was the inevitable mutually beneficial outcome. Let’s see what 2021 produces for both Lewis and Mercedes.

  31. Oconomo

    I think you are the most intelligent well gifted individual I used to follow on this worn website. I admire how reserved you are in your comments about current F1 news. You balance knowledge, insight and experience is like no one I’ve followed here. I hope in the future you will continue to comment as many of us look forward to what makes you tick. I like how fare you are in your critique and how your words make me consider another viewpoint. Are you seeking employment? A colleague is on the hunt for your special kind of skillsets. What’s next?

  32. Hamilton is scared of who will be his teammate in 2022. If Bottas resigned for 2022 expect Hamilton to hurriedly sign on the dotted line.

    This is how the negotiation went down.

    Hamilton “I want a three year contract, $70 million per year year, all the charitable foundation stuff, black paint on the cars, and VETO POWER over the second seat.

    Toto “We’ll give you all that except veto power over your teammate we choose. Not negotiable”

    Hamilton “Okay sign me up for just one year!!!”

  33. Seems that there is loads of chatter about Mercedes and Hamilton, terms and contract durations, but no mention of the reduced role that Mercedes really has in this whole process.
    In the not too distant past, they have reduced their interest in the F1 operation (The Team) down to 33%. Ineos is an equal partner along with Wolff. Signing up both drivers for just 2021 and leaving things open beyond that at least hints that there are more things going to change than just the names on the drivers entry list.
    Great banter about speculation, (love it, but which is what most of it is) who, where, when, etc. but not much about the bigger picture of where is F1 going and what role will Ineos play in this with their equal share.
    Longer term, it looks like Mercedes, the automotive design, manufacturing and sales conglomerate, is putting the pieces in play to continue reducing their involvement.

  34. So all this delay for a foundation for virtue signaling without real consequence.

    Will the foundation also help the slaves in the middle east sandboxes they visit?

  35. One year looks like a compromise for both sides, with neither side being happy.

    Though, IMHO Mercedes is in a better position for 2022. They won’t have shortage of championship capable drivers willing to drive the car next year. The 2021 WCC and WDC have been decided already. Nothing threatens Mercedes and Lewis.

  36. Every now and then, I have to read the comments section just to remind myself why I don’t read the comments section… and it’s usually Lewis related articles

  37. This is no good for:

    1. Mercedes
    2. Lewis
    3. F1

    If you have a car your granny can win in it why do you need Lewis instead of granny?
    Can’t even imagine what both parties have written in their rotten hogwash communiques.
    С’mon just let Lewis march to a different (BLM or whatever) drum.

    There are a lot of loud moaning that no talented guys can enter F1 because of pay drivers.
    But ask yourself – who in fact is Lewis if not an overpriced pay driver?
    Russell can do the same if not better for a fraction of a Lewis’ appetite.

    1. So Lewis is paid so he’s a pay driver? That’s not actually how it works on the current version of Planet Earth. Unless Elon Musk has been pressing reset on the universe simulator again.

      1. Great response @david-br – usual top drawer
        However its sad really, that these opinions pervade.. hence my comment above

        Keep up the good work

        G

        1. @unklegsif Thanks, I just read your comment above, I know what your mean! Sometimes I think twice before opening a LH-related article because of that same sinking feeling…

    2. The trick is to get that car to be so fast and you won’t be doing that with a driver who can help develop it. Like Hamilton or Ricciardo.

      Besides, did Russell win? It’s always funny when people say it’s easy to win races in the fastest car and then they don’t win. Like Russell didn’t win when he had the chance, or Verstappen in Hungary or in Turkey etc etc etc.

      1. “Like Russell didn’t win when he had the chance”

        Yeah, because Russell changes the tyres on the car or cuts his own tyres with a knife. Following that logic… Hamilton didn’t win the championship in 2012 when he had the chance.

  38. #KeepFightingMichael . No he Won’t win the title this year. Sergio will push Verstappen hard enough to win it this year as improved Ferraris and the Astons claw in on the points, along with Mclaren and Alpine.

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