The Straits Times
Published on Oct 04, 2012

Lewis Hamilton offered best deal in F1: McLaren


SUZUKA, Japan (AFP) - Team chief Martin Whitmarsh says McLaren offered to make former world champion Lewis Hamilton the best paid driver in Formula One but insisted he had no regrets over his departure.

Following months of speculation, the Englishman decided to quit after six seasons in Formula One with the British outfit and will replace German seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher at Mercedes next year.

Whitmarsh said he believed the offer McLaren made to the 2008 world champion, who has been with the team for 14 years, would have made him the best-paid in the sport, where drivers command multi-million-dollar salaries.

"I think Lewis is a top-flight driver and we didn't underestimate his attractiveness to others in F1," he said.