How Much Do F1 Drivers Make

Formula 1 Driver Salaries 2023: How Much Do F1 Drivers Make?

Formula 1 is anexpensive sport that requires significant financial backing. With constant worldwide travel, multi-million dollar vehicles, extravagant events, and celebrity fans, Formula 1 teams and drivers demand lofty salaries to sustain their lavish racing budgets. As an F1 fan, I couldn’t help but wonder: how much do Formula 1 drivers make each season?

Analyzing the Formula 1 driver salaries 2023 figures published by RacingNews365, it’s clear that there is a vast distribution of wealth across the grid. While rookie drivers earn around $1 million, the top Formula 1 stars like Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton make over $35 million for the 2023 season.

The Highest Paid Formula 1 Drivers

Sitting comfortably at the top of the 2023 salary list is reigning world champion Max Verstappen. Having won the 2021 and 2022 titles in dominating fashion with Red Bull, Verstappen retains his position as the highest paid F1 driver this year with an incredible projected income of $55 million. Still only 25 years old, the Dutchman seems poised to claim a third straight championship and cement his status as today’s top Formula 1 driver.

Behind Verstappen is British racing legend Lewis Hamilton, who trails by $20 million with an anticipated $35 million salary for 2023. Despite enduring a difficult 2022 season where he failed to win a single race, Hamilton still commands Formula 1’s second largest salary thanks to his sustained excellence over 15 seasons, which includes seven world championships and 103 Grand Prix victories.

Rookies & Lower Salaries in Formula 1

At the opposite end of the F1 payroll spectrum are the rookie drivers and less accomplished racers making under $5 million for 2023. Young drivers like Yuki Tsunoda and F1 newcomer Logan Sargeant can expect to earn around $1 million salaries in their debut seasons.

While certainly impressive sums for drivers barely old enough to rent a car in most countries, Tsunoda and Sargeant’s earnings look minute next to established aces like Verstappen and Hamilton. This vast gulf between rookie and top salaries demonstrates the monetary value placed on sustained success in Formula 1.

The Complete 2023 Formula 1 Driver Salary List

Here is the full list of projected Formula 1 driver salaries for 2023 in order from highest paid to lowest paid:

  1. Max Verstappen – $55 million
  2. Lewis Hamilton – $35 million
  3. Fernando Alonso – $20 million
  4. Sebastian Vettel – $15 million
  5. Daniel Ricciardo – $15 million
  6. Charles Leclerc – $12 million
  7. Sergio Perez – $10 million
  8. Lando Norris – $5 million
  9. Valtteri Bottas – $5 million
  10. Carlos Sainz Jr. – $5 million
  11. George Russell – $5 million
  12. Esteban Ocon – $3 million
  13. Pierre Gasly – $2 million
  14. Guanyu Zhou – $2 million
  15. Alex Albon – $1 million
  16. Nyck de Vries – $1 million
  17. Nico Hulkenberg – $1 million
  18. Kevin Magnussen – $1 million
  19. Oscar Piastri – $1 million
  20. Logan Sargeant – $1 million
  21. Yuki Tsunoda – $1 million

Currency quoted in USD. Source: RacingNews365

Analysis of 2023 Formula 1 Salaries

Analyzing and comparing the 2023 driver salaries reveals intriguing details about the state of income distribution in Formula 1.

Assuming he claims another title, Verstappen should have no issue justifying his $55 million paycheck. The correlation between championship success and maximum salary is clear. If Verstappen somehow lost the 2023 crown, his salary would likely decrease for 2024 as his dominance faded.

An interesting case is Red Bull’s Sergio Perez, whose strong performances over the past two seasons have increased his salary from $2 million in 2020 to today’s $10 million. This demonstrates the monetary impact consistent podiums and race wins can provide. Should Perez maintain his current form, I expect his salary trajectory to continue rising.

Ferrari’s championship runner-up Charles Leclerc earns $12 million for 2023 – an impressive salary, but only one-fifth of Verstappen’s income despite finishing second in the 2022 standings. This shows that while on-track performance loosely correlates to salary amounts, factors like championships, marketability, and team status also play a major role.

Surprisingly, Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton earns Formula 1’s second-highest salary for 2023 despite finishing sixth overall last season without a single victory. His unparalleled career success and astronomical global brand power enables Hamilton to command huge salaries regardless of current on-track results.

Finally, an intriguing case is young British driver George Russell who makes $5 million for 2023 after claiming Mercedes’ only Grand Prix win last year. If Russell’s potential translates into championships over the coming decade, I expect him to inherit Lewis Hamilton’s salary figures in future years as Mercedes’ new star driver.


Reviewing and comparing the published Formula 1 salaries 2023 figures reveals a sport where monetary rewards unevenly correspond to factors like championship success, marketability, experience, and team status. While superstars like Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton make over $35 million thanks to winning titles and their celebrity, less accomplished drivers earn hundred-times less despite similar on-track results.

This vast discrepancy in earnings is likely to remain in F1’s unequal economy. However, new young talents emerging as title contenders may begin commanding larger salaries that better reflect their championship potential. Ultimately, the quest for victory promises to make the lavishly-funded world of Formula 1 even more financially uncompromising in seasons to come.

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