Four F1 drivers named on Forbes’ highest-paid athletes list

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Four Formula 1 drivers have been named among the 100 highest-paid athletes in the world in Forbes‘ annual list, published on Wednesday.

Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel, Fernando Alonso and Nico Rosberg all featured on the list that was topped by soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo.

Three-time F1 world champion Hamilton was the leading racing driver, ranking as the 11th highest-paid sportsman in the world.

Forbes reports that the Briton has earned $42 million in salary over the past year and a further $4 million in endorsements, the latter boosted by a new brand ambassador deal with French cosmetics company L’Oreal.

Ferrari’s Vettel ranked 19th on the list, earning $40 million and an additional $1 million in endorsements thanks to ties with companies such as Braun, which also works with the NFL.

Alonso finished 24th on the list on $36.5 million for the past year, while two-time championship runner-up Rosberg squeezed into the top 100, finishing 98th on $21 million.

Of the top 20, only Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco earned less than Hamilton and Vettel in endorsements.

NASCAR stars Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Jimmie Johnson were the only other racing drivers to make Forbes‘ top 100. Earnhardt ranked 71st on $23.5 million, while Johnson was 82nd on $22.2 million.

List-topping Ronaldo earned an estimated $88 million in the past year, while just two women – Serena Williams (40th) and Maria Sharapova (88th) – made the top 100.

You can see the full list from Forbes here.

Santino Ferrucci will drive No. 14 for AJ Foyt Racing full time in 2023 IndyCar season

Santino Ferrucci AJ Foyt
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Santino Ferrucci will return to full-time racing in the NTT IndyCar Series next season, joining AJ Foyt Racing.

Ferrucci had made eight IndyCar starts with three teams since his last full-time season in 2020 while also racing part time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series this year.

He will drive the storied No. 14 Dallara-Chevrolet for four-time Indy 500 winner A.J. Foyt’s team, which will field the car from its Waller, Texas headquarters.

“It’s incredibly exciting to be back in the INDYCAR Series full time,” Ferrucci said in a team release. “Being a part-time driver over the last two years has been hard for me, personally. I’m a race car driver, and I want to compete. Working with different teams has been exciting, and I’m proud that no matter which car I’ve raced, I’ve always shown speed and consistency. I couldn’t be more excited to join AJ Foyt Racing in the 14 Chevy. I can’t wait to make the best of it.”

Ferrucci, 24, had finished a career-best fourth in IndyCar four times, including the 104th Indy 500 in 2020. He was the 2019 Indy 500 rookie of the year with a sixth.

In nine Xfinity starts since 2021, Ferrucci has a career-best finish of 13th at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

“I am thrilled to welcome Santino to the team,” Larry Foyt said in a release. “He’s shown a knack for getting toward the front of the field, and I think he is a racer who moves forward on race day. A.J. sees the fire in him and has enjoyed their meetings together. I think Santino’s experience will help his rookie teammate as well, so he is a great addition to our roster.”

Ferrucci will be teamed at AJ Foyt Racing with Benjamin Pedersen, who finished fifth in the 2022 Indy Lights standings. The team has yet to specify the number for Pedersen’s entry, which will be fielded out of its Indianapolis race shop.

Foyt’s two full-time drivers last season were Dalton Kellett and Kyle Kirkwood, who is moving to Andretti Autosport.