The Sunday Times named Lewis Hamilton as Britain’s highest-paid sportsperson, with an estimated fortune in excess of £130 million, but where does that money come from and what does he spend it on?
It’s well documented that Formula 1 is one of the most lucrative sports in the world, and with Hamilton being one of the top drivers – and probably the biggest name – in that sphere at the moment following his fourth world championship win, it’s understandable that he’ll be paid accordingly.
In 2015, Hamilton secured a megabucks deal to drive for Mercedes which would see him contracted for three years and pocket a tidy £100 million for his trouble.
It’s also believed that an additional £10 million in bonuses were built into the contract, so it’s in his interest not to just rest on his laurels now he has secured that deal.
This year alone, it’s thought he has made as much as £35 million, with £28.9m of this being a combination of his Mercedes pay and race winnings en route to glory.
The exact prize money Hamilton earned is difficult to gauge, as Formula 1 keep the details of what they dish out under wraps, although it’s thought to depend on the team’s performance over a number of years, rather than just the current season.
A chunk of the Brit’s money comes from big money sponsorship deals with the likes of Monster Energy, Bose, and Bombardier, although again these details are hard to come by.
However, according to the Business Insider report, he's likely to have earned about £6m this year alone from the sponsorships.
Regardless it’s obvious that each will expect plenty back for their money, and Hamilton has appeared in a number of adverts, notably for IWC watches and motorcycle company MV Augusta Motors.
Although, Hamilton does a lot more than just sit on the pile he’s raking in, and is a notoriously lavish spender, with a double purchase of £2.2m Mercedes cars being one of his flashier purchases.
One is for himself, and the other for his dad, and each has an engine to match his F1 car – though just how that will come in handy on the streets of Monaco we’re not quite sure.
Mercedes poster boy has taken up residence in the well-known tax haven, and is rumoured to have property interests there surpassing £10 million, although this has never been confirmed.
Hamilton has a number of celebrity friends, and was pictured hanging out with Neymar, the world’s most expensive footballer, in 2016, as well as model Bella Hadid.
Other notable spending includes his purchase of Prince’s Fender Stratocaster guitar for over £61,000 and a blood-red private jet for an eye-watering £20m.
The latter, however, was met with accusations of tax avoidance through a scheme based on the Isle of Man, although he’s far from the first celebrity to find a way around such additional levies.
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