EXCLUSIVE | Highest-paid Formula 1 drivers in 2022: Max Verstappen ahead of Lewis Hamilton

COLORING | Red Bull’s young champion is not only unbeaten on the circuit this year, but is also crushing the competition in terms of revenue.

Max Verstappen already beaten Lewis Hamilton circuit, winning the Formula One (F1) championship last year, at the end of a season that left all F1 fans in doubt. Now the 25-year-old driver of the Red Bull team, who won his second title in a row a few weeks ago, is ahead of his British rival in the ranking of the highest paid F1 drivers.

With a pre-tax total 60 million dollars (bonuses and salary) Max Verstappen is the highest paid F1 driver in 2022. Forbes. Since 2013, Lewis Hamilton has been the top-earning driver in the ranking Forbes The world’s highest-paid athlete is now second in estimated earnings 55 million dollars.

Fernando Alonso The latest driver (Alp) to overtake Lewis Hamilton in the ranking of top-earning F1 drivers is third in earnings this year. 30 million dollars. It follows him Sergio PerezMax Verstappen’s teammate at Red Bull ($26 million) and Charles LeclercA young Monegasque driver from the Ferrari team ($23 million).

In total, the ten highest-earning F1 drivers pocketed this year 264 million dollarsbe one 25% increase compared to 2021 projections set during the season.

Revenue from sponsorship deals is not taken into account to prepare this ranking, especially since F1 offers few marketing opportunities compared to tennis or the NBA. Most drivers care little about contracts other than required appearances for their teams and sponsors. Only a few of them could earn more than $1 million from non-sports: Lewis Hamilton ($8 million) and Max Verstappen ($2 million).

Nevertheless, there are reasons to believe that the incomes of F1’s star drivers will increase further, and not just because of F1’s growth. Next year, the new budget cap introduced last season is expected to limit team spending in key areas 135 million dollars, which will force Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull to change their budgets compared to the days when these teams could spend uncontrollably insane sums. However, if teams have had to cut back on design and research costs, the pilots’ prize money is excluded from the budget cap calculation, allowing team owners with large opportunities to continue to inject money. Experts believe that the search for a competitive advantage under the new model will lead to a sharp increase in pilot salaries over the next few years.

So it’s not time for Max Verstappen to slow down!


Max Verstappen. | Source: Getty Images

#1. Max Verstappen

Stable : Red Bull Racing

country : Netherlands | Age : 25 years

Gross income : $60 million

salary : $40 million | Bonuses : $20 million

Max Verstappen, who signed a lucrative new contract ahead of the start of the season, ends 2022 with 15 race wins, including victory in the final GP of the season in Abu Dhabi on Sunday 20 November. He set a new record in F1 and led the drivers’ standings with 146 points. Thanks to his young prodigy, the Red Bull team won their first constructors’ championship since 2013, ending Mercedes’ eight-year reign.

F1 Ranking
Lewis Hamilton. | Source: Getty Images

#2. Lewis Hamilton

Stable : Mercedes

country : United Kingdom | Age : 37 years old

Gross income : $55 million

salary : $55 million | Bonuses : None

Lewis Hamilton, who won four consecutive Formula 1 seasons (2017-2020) and narrowly missed out on a fifth title last year, has had a difficult 2022, falling to sixth in the drivers’ standings after failing to win a race for the first time. In his 16-year F1 career. His contract with Mercedes expires next year, but he has indicated this autumn that he will sign a new multi-year deal with the team, brushing aside speculation of a potential retirement. No matter when he decides to end his career, he will have something to look after. Indeed, the British driver is the founder of X44, an off-road racing team in the Extreme E Championship.

F1 Ranking
Fernando Alonso. | Source: Getty Images

#3. Fernando Alonso

Stable : Alp

country : Spain | Age : 41 years old

Gross income : $30 million

salary : $30 million | Bonuses : None

Fernando Alonso finished ninth in the drivers’ standings after two seasons and a two-year hiatus with Alpine. The Spaniard will be replaced in 2023 Sebastian Vettel In Aston Martin. He was due to have his first test session with his new team in Abu Dhabi after the last GP of the season on Sunday 20 November.

F1 Ranking
Sergio Perez. | Source: Getty Images

#4. Sergio Perez

Stable : Red Bull Racing

country : Mexico | Age : 32 years old

Gross income : $26 million

salary : $10 million | Bonuses : $16 million

While tied with Charles Leclerc in the drivers’ standings ahead of the Abu Dhabi GP, Sergio Perez moved behind the Monegasque to extend his three-point lead for the entire season and deprive Red Bull of the top two spots in the drivers’ standings. . His season was also marred by tension with teammate Max Verstappen in the penultimate race at the São Paulo GP on 13 November. “It shows who he really is,” Sergio Perez responded on the radio after the Dutchman refused to obey his team’s orders to let his team-mate pass him. Last May, the Mexican driver extended his contract with Red Bull for two years.

F1 Ranking
Charles Leclerc. | Source: Getty Images

#5. Charles Leclerc

Stable : Ferrari

country : Monaco | Age : 25 years

Gross income : $23 million

salary : $12 million | Bonuses : 11 million dollars

Charles Leclerc won two of the first three GPs of the season and finished second in the drivers’ standings after a fierce battle with Sergio Perez. He has a contract with Ferrari until 2026. president of the Italian team, John Elkann, has made it clear that the team should be in position to win the title by then, but Charles Leclerc’s goals are not that far off: “I’m very impatient,” he said. I will prepare to become the world champion in 2023 and I will do my best.”

F1 Ranking
Sebastian Vettel. | Source: Getty Images

# 6. (tie) Sebastian Vettel

Stable : Aston Martin

country : Germany | Age : 35 years

Gross income : $17 million

salary : $15 million | Bonuses : $2 million

After four titles and 16 years in F1, Sebastian Vettel is retiring. He has not won a race since 2019 but leaves Formula One with 53 career victories. He trails Lewis Hamilton (103) and Michael Schumacher (91) in terms of career wins.

F1 Ranking
Daniel Ricardo. | Source: Getty Images

# 6. (tie) Daniel Ricciardo

Stable : McLaren

country : Australia | Age : 33 years old

Gross income : $17 million

salary : $15 million | Bonuses : $2 million

Daniel Ricciardo was under contract with McLaren until 2023, but the team terminated his contract last August, leaving him without a driver team in the off-season. He is rumored to be a reserve driver for Mercedes or Red Bull. Daniel Ricciardo, who made a big splash in the Netflix documentary series, Formula 1: Drivers of their own destinyis reportedly partnering with Hulu to produce a scripted F1 series.

F1 Ranking
Carlos Sainz. | Source: Getty images

#8. Carlos Sainz

Stable : Ferrari

country : Spain | Age : 28 years old

Gross income : $15 million

salary : $8 million | Bonuses : $7 million

Carlos Sainz eventually dropped to fifth in the drivers’ standings, but his strong start to the season saw him sign a two-year contract extension with Ferrari in April. He also took his first career win at the British Grand Prix in July.

F1 Ranking
Lando Norris. | Source: Getty Images

#9. Lando Norris

Stable : McLaren

country : United Kingdom | Age : 23 years

Gross income : 11 million dollars

salary : $5 million | Bonuses : $6 million

Lando Norris took a step forward in 2021, securing his first pole position and four podiums. McLaren rewarded the driver with a contract extension until 2025. He has dropped to seventh in the standings in 2022, but still looks like an exciting young talent heading into next season. Oscar Pisastri21, at McLaren.

F1 Ranking
George Russell. | Source: Getty Images

#10. George Russell

Stable : Mercedes

country : United Kingdom | Age : 24 years

Gross income : $10 million

salary : $3 million | Bonuses : $7 million

George Russell impressed in his first season at Mercedes, taking his first pole position in July and his first victory in Sao Paulo on 13 November. This allowed him to overtake legendary teammate Lewis Hamilton in the drivers’ standings.


Since F1 driver salaries are rarely published, Forbes made his estimates in cooperation with Caroline Reid, Formula works for Money. Estimates are based on financial filings, legal documents and press leaks, as well as conversations with industry experts, and are rounded to the nearest million. Drivers generally receive a base salary and bonuses (or bonuses) based on points earned or race or championship wins, depending on the size of the team and the experience of the driver. Non-sports income is not taken into account in this ranking. Forbes does not include taxes or agency fees.

Article translated from US Forbes – Author: Brett Knight

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