Lewis Hamilton announces bumper new £100m Mercedes deal blowing Max Verstappen out of water is ‘very, very close’

LEWIS HAMILTON says he is closing in on signing his new Mercedes deal, worth around £100million.

The seven-time F1 world champion is out of contract at the end of the season.

GettyLewis Hamilton is closing in on a new £100m Mercedes deal[/caption]

He currently earns £40m a year with Merc, while rival Max Verstappen is on £37m with Red Bull.

Hamilton’s new contract is now set to blow the Dutchman’s out of the water at around £50m a year. 

And he says his new deal is in the hands of the lawyers.

Hamilton, 38, was quizzed by SunSport ahead of this weekend’s Hungarian GP about the progress over the new deal, which is expected to be a two-year extension.

He said: “I actually like these questions, so you can keep them going… It’s very, very close.”

When asked if it would be tied up before the summer break after next week’s Belgian GP, he added: “Nope… It might be announced at the end of the year. I might keep you waiting! 

“Honestly, I don’t have any more information for you to share. It continues to be with the lawyers, back and forth on things. 

“I’ve not been part of it the whole time. I’ve been removed from it from the beginning. 


“I’ve been wanting to focus on all the other things I have going on. The team has been working on it in the background. 

“There’s no negotiation left. It’s just all the small bits.”

Meanwhile, Hamilton was also quizzed about rumours that up to three teams have breached the cost-cap limit.

Teams were limited to spending $140m (£109m) in 2022 to develop their cars with reports in Italy claiming teams have fallen foul of the rules.

Red Bull were fined $7m (£5.5m) last year and given a 10 percent reduction in wind tunnel time as a punishment for last year’s breach.

Hamilton said: “It’s definitely a concern. I mean, it wasn’t really a big punishment last time so there’s no real [deterrent].

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“There’ll be people that will probably go for it again, and know they’re just gonna get slapped on the wrist.”

Asked what punishment he feels would be appropriate Hamilton added: “I’m not going to say what it should be, it’s not my job to do that.

“We have people in place that are supposed to police that, but it doesn’t surprise me. It was not a big penalty before.”

His Mercedes teammate George Russell however also called for greater punishment for repeat offenders, should they be found to have overspent.

He added: “If anybody has breached any regulation, you want the punishment to represent the crime.

“There were breaches last year, and clearly the punishment didn’t fit the crime. We don’t want to see that happen again.

“And if it’s a second-time offender, the punishment should be even greater than what it perhaps a fair punishment, if it happens two years in a row.

“I trust the FIA, Mohammed is a great force, and they won’t let anybody get away with something that shouldn’t have happened under their watch.”

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