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New massive Hamilton contract 'as good as done' - Wolff

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We've heard it before but Mercedes boss Toto Wolff insists Lewis Hamilton's new contract with the Silver Arrows outfit is "as good as done".

It's been a lengthy process between the four-time world champion and his team, justified by the need to discuss and work out a myriad of details included in the over 100-page deal.

According to Germany's Sport Bild, the three-year contract which covers the 2019-2021 period will earn Hamilton a record-breaking $60 million a year.

"It is as good as done," Wolff said.

"We are absolutely on the same wavelength. But a contract like this is over 100 pages with a corresponding number of points to address. And all that has to be done first," he added.

By the time late 2021 rolls around, Hamilton's new deal will have made him approximately $184 million, a staggering amount, but one which former F1 driver Gerhard Berger believes is fully warranted.

"Without Lewis, Mercedes would be only third behind Ferrari and Red Bull," contends Berger.

"Hamilton is the fastest driver on the grid. He can make the difference. So Mercedes has to do everything to secure him," the former Ferrari and McLaren driver added.

As F1 awaits the official confirmation of Hamilton's new contract, Red Bull's Helmut Marko tried to generate a bit of tension by offering his own version of why the British driver has delayed his signing.

"Toto tried to get Vettel and Max, but both declined him," Marko told Sport Bild.

"Of course, Lewis heard about this so he put up his price."

Regardless of the veracity of Marko's comments, Hamilton was always expected to drive a hard bargain.

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