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Thursday 30 January at 07:35
Hamilton denies arguing with Mercedes over money
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Thursday 30 January at 07:35 : Jan.30 (GMM) Lewis Hamilton has rejected speculation that he is arguing about the monetary value of his next contract with Mercedes.

Reports have suggested that Mercedes is offering the new six-time world champion about $50 million a year for 2021 and 2022, with Hamilton firing back with a $66m counter-offer.

The 35-year-old denies it.

"Toto (Wolff) and I have not even spoken about the contract yet," Hamilton said on social media.

"Nothing is being negotiated currently, papers are making up stories."

Indeed, staying at Mercedes makes sense for Hamilton, as Red Bull and Ferrari have already signed up Max Verstappen and Charles Leclerc on long-term deals.

But speculation the Mercedes works team could be sold and rebranded as Aston Martin for 2021 could be a complication that re-fires rumours of a switch to Ferrari for Hamilton.

Red Bull's Dr Helmut Marko this week suggested that only Ferrari would be willing to pay Hamilton what he is reportedly demanding.

"I believe that no team, not even Mercedes, will be willing to spend such sums on a driver. Maybe Ferrari," he told Auto Bild.

Speaking to the Italian magazine Autosprint, Ferrari's sporting boss Laurent Mekies puts Hamilton in the same category as Verstappen and Leclerc.

"They are all exceptional talents, that is clear," he said.
RELATED NEWS ITEMS
02-03 Money 'not decisive' in Hamilton talks - Wolff
07-02 Hamilton deserves Schumacher record - Brawn
06-02 Hamilton contract talks to start soon - Wolff
06-02 Money could break up Hamilton-Mercedes - Horner
04-02 Hamilton strong but 'beatable' - Briatore
29-01 Mercedes unwilling to pay Hamilton $66m - Marko
27-01 Hamilton wants new $66m per year Mercedes deal
 
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STANDINGS 2016
Driver championship
1.Hamilton250
2.Bottas188
3.Verstappen181
Constructors championship
1.Mercedes436
2.Ferrari288
3.Red Bull244
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