McLaren will offer Hamilton new 60m contract extension to stay at Woking-based marque
22:46 GMT, 24 May 2012
McLaren are ready to offer Lewis Hamilton an initial three-year contract extension worth 60million in an attempt to keep their star driver — who will go in search of his first win of the season in Sunday’s Monaco Grand Prix.
Hamilton’s current contract, worth 15m a season, expires at the end of this campaign. And, as with Jenson Button’s renewal last year, McLaren are prepared to include clauses which could see the 2008 world champion extend his stay until 2017 and net at least another 40m.
Will he sign for McLaren Hamilton mingles with fans before the Monaco GP
While McLaren are eager to get discussions under way, Hamilton’s management are understandably biding their time, given there could yet be opportunities at Mercedes, Red Bull and even Ferrari next season.
Sportsmail understands talks are likely to begin in earnest around early July. /05/24/article-0-1344B51B000005DC-893_468x286.jpg” width=”468″ height=”286″ alt=”Double act: Can McLaren principal Martin Whitmarsh persuade Hamilton to stay” class=”blkBorder” />
Double act: Can McLaren principal Martin Whitmarsh persuade Hamilton to stay
After a tumultuous 2011, on and off the track, Hamilton is focused again. McLaren, however, have been in the wars this season with pit-stop blunders, among other mistakes, conspiring to hamper the 27-year-old in races.
However, Sky commentator Martin Brundle feels an easing of Hamilton’s McLaren sponsor commitments will be key to whether he stays or not.
‘Will McLaren allow him some space and some time of his own to sell I think that will be more of a key factor than a couple of dodgy pit stops, frankly,’ he said.