Car Racing is one of the most taxing and at the same time one of the most lucrative sports in the world. Not only are race car driver crazy famous but are also paid mullah. Here we take a look at Top 10 Highest Paid Race Car Drivers.
Top 10 Highest Paid Race Car Drivers
Racing has been a fixation of humans for a long time. Ever since humans first started riding other animals, there have been races. Be it solo riding races or chariot races, but humans are addicted to speed and enjoying the nail-biting finishes of races. Though chariot racing has gone out of fashion now, they are replaces by bigger and meaner monsters called race cars.
10. Denny Hamlin
At number 10 in Highest Paid Race Car Drivers is Denny Hamlin. He is full time racer Joe Gibbs Racing in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series while also being a part timer in XFinity Series. He is the 2016 Daytona 500 winner along with wins like 2015 Sprint All Star Race, 2014 Aaron’s 499, 2010 Southern 500, Sprint Unlimited winner (three times) and Budweiser Duel winner (twice). A promising rookie when he started out, he won Nextel Cup Series Rookie of the Year in 2006. Now he earns $15.1 million a year, making him one of the richest stock car racers.
9. Kevin Harvick
At number 9 is Kevin Harvick. He is a stock car racer currently driving Chevrolet SS for Stewart-Hass Racing in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. Kevin also drives part time in the XFinity Series. He is a 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion and two times XFinity Series Champion. With 46 wins, he also has the third highest wins in XFinity series and also has the all time record for cup wins at Phoenix International Raceway with 8 wins. Considering his great run, no wonder he is one of the top paid stock car racers with an income of $15.5 million.
8. Nico Rosberg
At number 8 in Highest Paid Race Car Drivers is Nico Rosberg. He is a criminally underrated racer because of the presence of racers like Vettel, Alonso and Hamilton. Despite that Nico is one of the best racers of currently who managed to finish at 2nd place last year and is currently in first position in F1 Championship 2016 ahead of Lewis Hamilton by 26 points. Because of his dual citizenship, he has raced for both Finland and Germany. Though he earned $19 million last year making him one of the highest earning F1 drivers, we have a feeling he will pocket an even bigger check this year.
7. Jeff Gordon
At number 7 in Highest Paid Race Car Drivers is Jeff Gordon. Sometimes it feels Jeff Gordon has been racing for as long as we remember considering the fact that he is 45 now. One of the greats of the modern era of NASCAR, he is 3rd on all time Cup wins list with 93 wins. He is four time Sprint Cup Champion and won the Daytona three times. He often makes it to lists of greatest NASCAR racers of all time, not only because of his achievements but also his durability. Even at the twilight of his career he has raked in $21.6 million last year. He is one of the top 10 race car drivers of all time.
6. Jimmie Johnson
At number 6 in Highest Paid Race Car Drivers is Jimmie Johnson. He is a stock car racing driver and six time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion. He is the only driver in NASCAR history to win 5 consecutive championships. In 2013, he won his 6th and is only behind Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt in most championships won. With earnings close to $22.2 million last year, he is one of the highest paid NASCAR drivers.
5. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
At number 5 in Highest Paid Race Car Drivers is Dale Earnhardt Jr. Racing is in his blood considering that his father Dale Earnhardt is NASCAR Hall of famer. He is one of the best NASCAR drivers of all time and thus has even won the Most Popular Driver Award thirteen times consecutively from 2003-2015. Dale has been especially successful at the Daytona International Speedway that earned him the moniker of “Pied Piper” of Daytona. He also won the Daytona 500 twice. He earned approximately $23.5 million combining both his winnings and endorsements and with a net worth of $300 million, he really is one of the richest race car drivers in the world.
4. Kimi Raikkonen
At number 4 in Highest Paid Race Car Drivers is Kimi Raikkonen. He is no stranger to being awarded big checks. This F1 racer who won the Championship back in 2007 in his first season with Ferrari was reportedly paid wage of $51 million a year! That made him 26th highest paid celebrity in 2008 and the 5th highest paid sportsman in the world. No wonder he is one of the richest race car drivers in the world. Last year he earned $27 million in salary and endorsements which might be half of what he earned back in 2007 but still is enough to make him fourth in our list.
3. Sebastian Vettel
At number 3 is Sebastian Vettel. At just 29, Vettel is already considered among the all time greats of F1 racing. He was a youth sensation making several youngest records like youngest to take part in official practice session of Grand Prix, to score championship points, lead a race, win a race and secure pole position. Several of these were later improved by other racers though. He enjoyed a period of unprecedented success when he won four F1 World Driver Championships consecutively. This made him the only fourth person to ever win four or more championships. He has earned a reported $32 million last year making him one of the top paid race car drivers.
2. Fernando Alonso
At number 2 in Highest Paid Race Car Drivers is Fernando Alonso. This Spaniard is one of the best F1 racers in the world. He first got behind the steering wheel when he was three and got into kart racing and won three consecutive championships. He was 22 when he won the Grand Prix and became the youngest person to do so, a feat which was subsequently broken by Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen. With a salary of $34 million last year, he is one of the highest paid racers.
1. Lewis Hamilton
At number 1 in Highest Paid Race Car Drivers is Lewis Hamilton. Lewis Hamilton is probably one of the best known race car drivers in the world and for good reasons. So it doesn’t come a surprise that he is also the highest paid F1 driver. With a paycheck of $36 million and a further 3 million in endorsements, his earning are off the charts. He has 50 wins, 101 podium finishes and three championships to his name in his illustrious career. He was born to race and had apparently approached McLaren team’s principal Ron Dennis and said,” I want to race for you one day. I want to race for McLaren.”
These are the highest paid race car drivers in the world.