Announced in March 2021, Penni Thow joined Hamilton’s inner-circle as his manager, but also to assist him with projects such as Project 44.

Thow - who is based in New York - is the founder and chief executive of Cooper - a company that specialises in entertainment, media, fashion, sports, technology, and philanthropy.

Why are Mercedes going backwards in F1 2023?

Prior to Cooper, Thow was executive vice president for SB Projects, which is owned by Scooter Braun - the manager of music artists Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande.

As SB Projects’ head of social impact, Thow headed Bieber’s 2013 campaign - #GiveBackPhilippines - raising over $1 million for typhoon relief and aid.

Similarly, she helped launch the ‘One Love Manchester’ concert, led by Grande, following the 2017 bombing in Manchester - this raised over £17 million for the British Red Cross.

Thow’s role in Merc talks

As revealed by team boss Toto Wolff, Thow is playing an integral role in the negotiations that are taking place between Hamilton and Mercedes.

Hamilton’s current F1 deal runs out at the end of F1 2023, but he has reiterated his desire to remain with the team for the next couple of years.

In an interview with ESPN, Wolff confirmed much-needed Thow’s involvement.

“At the end of the day, talking about money with your friend is difficult,” Wolff said.

"Penni [Thow, Hamilton's manager] helps. Penni has been keeping us in check and we have found a good modus operandi with her about how we talk.

"We avoid talking to each other about money but we both talk to Penni."

Thow is also playing a crucial role in Hamilton’s off-track exploits.

Hamilton has a growing portfolio of projects outside of F1, including the launch of the Hamilton Commission, his own Extreme E team and production company.

His new production company was launched in the backend of 2022 in collaboration with Thow’s company, Cooper.

Dawn Apollo Films is currently working on a feature F1 film involving Brad Pitt.