Former F1 Driver Explains Mercedes’ Moral Obligations Against Paying Lewis Hamilton a Huge Salary for F1 Contract

Published 01/30/2021, 11:40 AM EST
FILE PHOTO: Formula One F1 – Turkish Grand Prix – Istanbul Park, Istanbul, Turkey – Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton celebrates after winning the race and the world championship Pool via REUTERS/Clive Mason/Pool/File Photo


The 2021 Formula One season about to start and Mercedes is the only team left on the grid to confirm who will fill the vacant seat in the team. Is it the young prodigy George Russell or the 7-time World Champion Lewis Hamilton?

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Former Formula One driver, Jan Lammers does think that Hamilton’s time at the Silver Arrows is up after winning his 7th World Champion and matching the record of F1 legend Michael Schumacher.

Lammers said, ” Well, I don’t know, It could be that Hamilton is overestimating his market value and underestimating the situation in the world. Meanwhile, I think Mercedes is limited in what one can offer Hamilton morally.

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“Because how can one justify it to the staff and the management that he continues to receive his millions in salary, while people elsewhere in the company have to lay off people?”

Who is next in line?

He also believes that Mercedes are using leverage in the name of George Russell to try to make Hamilton’s demands reasonable. Lammers added, “I don’t think Mercedes expected Russell to do so well (during his raid on the Sakhir Grand Prix).

“But now that it does, it would be foolish for Mercedes not to use it against Hamilton in the contract negotiations. And we all know one thing for sure and that is that team boss Toto Wolff is not stupid.” 

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Jan Lammers is well aware of what qualities can Lewis Hamilton bring to the team, but does not think it’s enough.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – NOVEMBER 22: ART Grand Prix Formula 2 driver George Russell of Great Britain and Williams F1 and Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP talk in the Drivers Press Conference during previews ahead of the Abu Dhabi Formula One Grand Prix at Yas Marina Circuit on November 22, 2018 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

He stated, “With this kind of thing you have to be careful not to go too far. What Hamilton does not seem to fully realize is that there is of course a great opportunity for Mercedes as well.

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“That company just wants to sell cars and then the question is: what do you score more with? Is that with the next world title. That would be great, of course, but many people don’t care.

“Or do you score more from a loyalty point of view with a statement against Hamilton’s millions in salary? I personally think that Mercedes has the chance to make a very powerful statement by stating that the loyalty lies with the Mercedes customers and employees and not with one sportsman. I think that has been a little underexposed.”

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Arpit Gomes

852 articles

Arpit Gomes is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Currently pursuing his Journalism degree from Xavier’s Institute, he is a big fan of McLaren and their driver Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo. Arpit always looks forward to the paddock moving to Spa and drivers dealing with the exciting Eau Rouge corner as well the straight at Monza.

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