Lewis Hamilton has signed a two-year contract extension with Mercedes that will keep the seven-time world champion with the team till atleast the end of 2023.
— Lewis Hamilton (@LewisHamilton) July 3, 2021
This is Hamilton’s second contract extension with the Silver Arrows within the space of half a year after the British driver signed a 1-year deal – reportedly worth $30 million a season – few weeks before the start of the 2021 calendar.
This keeps the most popular driver on the grid in the sport till the age of 39 and extends his partnership with the Mercedes team for 11 years.
What has Lewis said?
“It is hard to believe it’s been nearly nine years working with this incredible team and I’m excited we’re going to continue our partnership for two more years,” said Hamilton.
“We’ve accomplished so much together but we still have a lot to achieve, both on and off the track. I’m incredibly proud and grateful of how Mercedes has supported me in my drive to improve diversity and equality in our sport. They have held themselves accountable and made important strides in creating a more diverse team and inclusive environment.
“Thank you to all the dedicated and talented individuals at Mercedes whose hard work makes it all possible and the Board for their continued trust in me. We’re entering a new era of car which will be challenging and exciting and I can’t wait to see what else we can achieve together.”
What does this mean for Valterri Bottas?
Hamilton vs Verstappen = CONFIRMED ✅
— Formula 1 (@F1) July 3, 2021
Lewis committing his future to Mercedes spells bad news for Valterri Bottas. This means there is only one more Mercedes seat available for the next few years and with Mercedes junior driver George Russell continuing his stunning rise in the sport, Bottas might find himself lower down the grid next season.
What does this mean for Max Verstappen?
One of the major reasons for Hamilton’s extension could be the emergence of Red Bull and Max Verstappen as worthy challengers to Hamilton’s crown. The 7-time world champion has repeatedly stated that the Mercedes team has had to work harder than ever before this season to maintain their superiority at the top of the grid.
Having a rival such as Verstappen and Red Bull could act as a significant motivation for Lewis to remain in the sport and if Hamilton can overcome this hurdle, it adds to his legacy and cements his status as the greatest to ever do it.
[Image Credit: Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team]