Lewis Hamilton set to become richest ever athlete following secure his second Formula 1 world title.
Six years on from his first F1 success, after a richly deserved second championship, it will take a phenomenal effort to depose him this time.
Now Hamilton is looking at a new five-year, $182 million deal with Mercedes — making him the UK’s richest active athlete.
Earlier this year, Hamilton’s net worth was estimated at $124 million — a far cry from Beckham’s $406 million.
But Nigel Currie, a sponsorship and branding expert for brandRapport, told the UK Telegraph that Hamilton will catch up to Beckham in the long run.
“I would definitely say he’s going to be Britain’s highest-paid sportsman ever,” Currie said.
“He’s in pole position to do that, if you excuse the pun.”
Currie added that if Hamilton should go on to marry Scherzinger, their combined worth could surpass Beckham and his former Spice Girl wife Victoria’s.
“They’d be a highly marketable couple in their own right,” Currie said.
Hamilton was recently estimated to be the second highest paid British athlete, with an annual salary of $37 million. Football star Gareth Bale topped the list at $42 million.
But Currie says Hamilton’s earnings will soar because his new deal will allow him more freedom to negotiate personal endorsements.
Hamilton earned $3.5 million in endorsements this year but now that will skyrocket to more than $90 million, according to Currie.
“In individual sports like motor racing, tennis, golf, the real top stars like Roger Federer and Michael Schumacher were earning £50 million ($90 million) a year in terms of contracts, endorsements, sponsorships,” Currie said.