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Top 10 highest-paid Formula 1 (F1) Drivers for 2024

Published at :March 28, 2024 at 6:52 PM
Modified at :March 28, 2024 at 6:52 PM
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(Courtesy : Formula 1)

Rahul Saha

There were big developments in the Formula 1 (F1) paddock even before the 2024 season began, with seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton announcing that it’d be his last season with Mercedes ahead of joining Ferrari next year. The 39-year-old is banking on Ferrari to provide him with a competitive car, something that Mercedes have been unable to do for the past two seasons.

Surprisingly, there are no rookie drivers and no changes to the lineups since the season finale in Abu Dhabi last year.

Below is a list of the highest-paid drivers on the grid for 2024, according to 

10. Daniel Ricciardo (Visa Cash App RB): $7 million

Daniel Ricciardo was released by McLaren after the 2022 season, with the Australian driver left without a contract ahead of the 2023 season. However, the 8-time race winner didn’t have to wait long when Visa Cash App RB (previously AlphaTauri) roped him in midway through the 2023 season after they let go of Nick De Vries following a disappointing campaign. 

Ricciardo, being the experienced driver, settled into the car rather quickly and helped the team score viral points towards the end of the season. 

9. Valtteri Bottas (Kick Sauber): $10 million

Following his five-year stint with Mercedes, where the Finn driver won 10 races as well as helping the team win five Constructors titles, Valtteri joined the now-rebranded Kick Sauber in 2022 as their #1 driver. 

8. Carlos Sainz (Ferrari): $12 million

The outgoing Ferrari driver has been the only non-Red Bull driver to win a Formula 1 race since the beginning of the 2023 season. The Spanish driver only improved his chances of joining one of the top teams after he won the 2024 Australian GP a couple of weeks after this appendicitis operation. 

With one win and one podium in two races so far, the likes of Mercedes and Red Bull will definitely have an eye on the Spaniard’s progress throughout the season. 

7. Sergio Pérez (Red Bull): $14 million

Despite questions regarding his performances for Red Bull, Sergio Pérez has by far been the best second driver the team has had since the partnership between Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo. 

With his contract running out at the end of the 2024 season, the Mexican driver will have to produce more consistent performances if he’s to keep hold of his seat for 2025 and onwards. 

6. George Russell (Mercedes): $18 million

George came into the Mercedes set-up on the back of a successful three-year stint with Williams, where the British driver had the opportunity to exhibit his full repertoire. However, the only question unanswered remains whether he can handle the pressure of racing for one of the top dogs. 

Moreover, with Lewis Hamilton heading to Ferrari next season, Russell will feel he has his seat secured for at least a couple of seasons as he awaits who partners him next season. 

5. Fernando Alonso (Aston Martin): $18 million

Fernando Alonso is just like wine. With age, the Spaniard only keeps getting better. While many questioned his move to Aston Martin ahead of the 2023 season, the fact that he got consistently into the podium when the car had a decent pace shows he’s still got it. Moreover, with the second Mercedes seat being vacant for 2024 and his relationship with George Russell, Fernando will definitely be one of the top names on that Mercedes drivers’ shortlist. 

4. Lando Norris (McLaren): $20 million

McLaren have been investing in Lando Norris’ development since he made his debut for the papaya outfit in 2019. Over the years, the young British driver has repaid that faith. The 24-year-old driver currently holds the most podium places without a race win; however, with McLaren consistently improving their car and getting closer to the likes of Red Bull and Ferrari, the British driver will definitely have his moment of glory sooner rather than later. 

3. Charles Leclerc (Ferrari): $34 million

The Monegasque driver is often referred to as the “Chosen One” due to his close relationship with the prancing horses. Ferrari, too, have been adamant, although indirectly, that Leclerc is the team’s future moving forward, given that he signed a multi-year contract last season. The 26-year-old is currently paid $34 million annually. 

2. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes): $45 million

The seven-time world champion rocked the entire paddock when news of his multi-year contract with Ferrari first broke through. Arguably one of the greatest of all time, the 39-year-old has nothing else left to prove. But if someone has seen him throughout his career, they’d know that he’s going to Ferrari to win that elusive 8th drivers’ championship.

Given Ferrari are also Red Bull’s closest competitors as of now, there’s every chance Hamilton’s right once again, just like his switch to Mercedes from McLaren in 2013. 

1. Max Verstappen (Red Bull): $55 million

Max Verstappen has shown a level of dominance in Formula 1 that was hardly ever witnessed in the history of the sport. Before 2021, Max had only 10 race wins. Three seasons later, he has raced to 56 wins. Given what he’s producing on the track, Red Bull paying $55 million for his services is totally worth it. 

However, the only drawback for Red Bull is to keep producing race-winning cars in order to keep hold of their prized jewel. 

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