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Schumacher will be paid £20m by Mercedes in F1 2010

Having been reluctant to meet Jenson Button's pay demands for 2010 - leading to the reigning F1 World Champion jumping ship to rivals McLaren - Mercedes Grand Prix is willing to push the boat out to secure Michael Schumacher's services next season, it appears, with a reputed offer of some £20 million a year...
Michael Schumacher will receive a salary almost three times higher than that which Ross Brawn had been willing to pay reigning F1 World Champion Jenson Button, should he indeed put pen to paper and join Mercedes Grand Prix in 2010 to complete what has been described as 'one of the greatest comebacks in sport'.

It was reported in a number of German publications at the weekend that Schumacher and Mercedes – formerly Brawn GP – had in principle agreed terms for the most successful driver in the top flight's history to return to the grid next season alongside young compatriot Nico Rosberg in an all-homegrown 'super team' [see separate story – click here].

However, whereas it had initially been understood that the offer on the table was somewhere between £3.5 million and £7 million – similar to the figure of between £4 million and £8 million bandied about regarding the deal presented to Button – the Daily Mirror now reveals that Schumacher will likely take home an annual pay packet of some £20 million, the highest retainer in the sport following the departure of 2007 world champion Kimi Raikkonen, albeit still £10 million less than he was paid at Ferrari.

Adding further credence to the rumours, the Scuderia's president Luca di Montezemolo has admitted that the 91-time grand prix-winner's three-year consultancy contract is 'not binding' and that Schumacher is 'only a dear friend, not a team member' [see separate story – click here] – and doctors have given him the all-clear to make a famous return, now that the neck injury that ruled him out of replacing former team-mate Felipe Massa back in the summer has healed.

Should the extraordinary coup to lure the 40-year-old back into competitive action indeed come off, Mercedes will have fulfilled its promise to re-enter F1 for the first time in more than half a century with a star-studded driver line-up – only after paying Jordan Grand Prix a comparatively miserly £125,000 to ensure Schumacher of his debut in the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps the best part of two decades ago, it appears the Stuttgart manufacturer will have to shell out rather more second time around...

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Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button alongside Kevin Magnussen. Pic credit: McLaren
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unhapphy Mercedes uk workers - Unregistered

December 17, 2009 12:10 PM

we are so glad to see that having had to give up all our bonus this year to save any redundancies , our company can now afford to splash out extra £12m on a different driver to their reigning world champion that they have let go. this of course is on top of the £100m they have paid out to purchase the team. MERRY XMAS to all MBUK employees

kenguCobas - Unregistered

December 17, 2009 11:35 AM

I think we all know that Schumi is going to be announced at Merc, its pretty obvious that the planning for this would have started before the last GP, possibly even before then. Ross B and Nick F and Norbert would have known, so its likely that Jenson wouldnt have had a drive at Brawn/Merc either way. So a move to McLaren doesnt look so daft now does it (or much of a suprise!!)

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