“Nonsense stories”- Toto Wolff denies the rumors that claim Lewis Hamilton asking for a share in television revenues made by Mercedes.
While Lewis Hamilton has finally agreed to a contract extension with Mercedes, gossip around his contract does not seem to end soon. One such rumor claims that the seven times world champion discussed a potential share in Mercedes TV revenues.
What triggered this speculation?
At the end of last year’s F1 season, both Hamilton and Mercedes kick-started discussions related to a contract extension. While everything seems nice and easy at the start, the discussion came to a standstill.
Adding more fuel to the fire, former F1 team Chief Eddie Jordan talked of some disagreement between both parties. According to him, Hamilton is demanding a bigger stake in the organization’s TV revenue.
To be specific, his demands are in lieu of ten percent of the money paid to Mercedes by Formula 1 for their TV rights. While talking to leading sports daily, he said, “I believe Lewis is looking for ten percent of the team’s television money and it is hard to understand why he would not be worth that,”
Many experts argued that Hamilton, given to the few years left in his F1 career, must agree to any deal on the table. This way, he can think of creating some more records with all the right focus on the right things. Jordan disagreed to this notion. According to him, Hamilton is at par with other greats like Tiger Woods (PGA) or LeBron James (NBA).
He is a big asset to Mercedes and F1. Also, it’s due to Hamilton only that big brands like Tommy Hilfiger thought of coming on board with the F1 team. Hence, his demand for a revenue share seems legit by every means.
Hamilton never made such demands: Toto Wolff
It did not go the right way for Hamilton, and he faced the wrath of several experts and fans over the past few weeks. Few even advised Mercedes to give him a serious ‘ultimatum’ for such demands. Putting all speculations to rest, Toto Wolff has come to the defense of his legendary driver while refuting such claims.
“I’ve heard some nonsense stories about Lewis asking for a share in TV revenue or a veto on teammates. That was not discussed at all. We agreed on the most important terms already at the beginning of this year. The contract was signed last week.” said Toto Wolff
Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton vows to raise diversity in sport
According to the recent press release by Mercedes, Hamilton’s contract extension would also pave way for their efforts towards increased diversity in F1.
Reportedly, Hamilton personally pressed for this clause in his contract. The Brit stands as the only black driver on the grid, currently. According to Hamilton, mostly colored people could not make it to the cost-effective world of F1.
Hence, diligent efforts need to be in place to facilitate all such talented drivers across the globe. He also talked about the increased acts of ending racism in the sport’s realm.