Jun.3 – Seven times world champion Michael Schumacher is still the top earning driver in F1 according to business magazine Forbes and its most recent yearly ranking of the world’s 50 top salaried athletes. The German, who has yet top score a podium finish since his return last year with Mercedes GP, Schumacher appears at number nine on the list with a reported US $34 million in earnings.
The number takes into consideration not only his Mercedes retainer but, according to Forbes, an athletes’ “bonuses, prize money, appearance fees, licensing and endorsement income”. Schumacher is therefore two places higher than Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, with $32 million. Lewis Hamilton ranks 15th with his $30 million, two places behind MotoGP’s Valentino Rossi, with $31m.
NASCAR drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr, Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson also appear in the top 50, with Earnhardt ranked highest of the trio with his 17th. Forbes said the world’s highest earning athlete is Tiger Woods ($75m), with the average earnings of the top 50 being $28m – 11 per cent down on 2010.
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