How Much Do F1 Drivers Make?

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Clive Mason - Formula 1 / Getty Images

Formula 1 is probably one of the most lucrative (and high-throttle) sports in the world. Combine that with the risk drivers are exposed to during each race and it's no surprise that some of the 2021 drivers are paid tens of millions of dollars. So let's answer the question: how much do F1 drivers make?

What is Formula 1 and What is it All About?

Formula 1 may seem complicated and some people might feel left out at first when hearing fans discussing cars, drivers' race strategies, tire strategies, new technology, multiple acronyms like DRS or ERS and many other pieces of insider knowledge. 

Formula One, or F1, is a racing series held at different racing tracks all over the world. If you watch F1, you will notice that the cars look like the ones from the IndyCar Series. 

F1 cars are single-seaters, open-wheelers, open cockpit cars and the fastest in motorsport. These are just a few of the many rules set by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobil, FIA, or the International Automobile Federation. The FIA is the regulatory body of Formula 1 founded in 1904 in France. 

The organization revises, modifies and introduces new rules to ensure the safety of participants, promote fair competition, and guarantee that F1 fans get to see a spectacular race.

In the current 2022 season, 10 teams are participating in Formula 1. Each team has two cars and two drivers. Every team employs mechanics, engineers, designers and several other specialized staff. It is no surprise that a team has hundreds and sometimes over a thousand employees. 

The Drivers:

In total, there are 22 drivers competing in every race. Between the winning cars and the cars at the back of the field, there is a huge discrepancy in performance. Teams build their cars with money from sponsors and funds from the FIA. Like with lots of sports organizations, some teams just have more money than others. 

Drivers’ Salary and the Best-Earning Drivers:

There is also a noticeable difference in driver's salary. Even though the drivers are all exposed to the same danger, some of them are earning tens of millions of dollars.

Lewis Hamilton

Fernanda Alonso

Max Verstappen

What about the other drivers?

Let's take George Russel as an example. He is a great driver, showing great performance with a car that’s not very fast. ROKiT Williams Racing is not able able to put a fast car on track or to pay Russel more than he is earning right now ($958,000) due to their financial problems.

Many factors affect the salary of a driver, and the salary of each team may vary greatly. Salarysport has a great record of most drivers' salaries in 2022; check out the full table below:

  • Kimi Räikkönen ($7,525,000)
  • Antonio Giovinazzi ($684,000)
  • Max Verstappen ($19,500,000)
  • Sergio Pérez ($3,500,000)
  • Sebastian Vettel ($17,000,000)
  • Lance Stroll ($1,900,000)
  • Mick Schumacher ($600,000)
  • Nikita Mazepin ($500,000)
  • Daniel Ricciardo ($17,000,000)
  • Lando Norris ($1,500,000)
  • Lewis Hamilton ($60,000,000)
  • Valtteri Bottas ($11,000,000)
  • Fernando Alonso ($20,000,000)
  • Esteban Ocon ($4,600,000)
  • Nicholas Latifi ($950,000)
  • George Russell ($950,000)
  • Pierre Gasly ($1,900,000)
  • Yuki Tsunoda ($500,000)
  • Charles Leclerc ($30,000,000)
  • Carlos Sainz ($6,800,000)
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