Now the 2023 season is over, we have looked at F1 drivers’ reported earnings for the year against their points scored to see who has provided the best value for money.
Of course, there are several factors that are missing from the crude figures here such as car competitiveness, performance-related bonuses, the income a driver generates from their mere presence at a team and more – but this is merely a look at a driver’s reported salary against their points from the 2023 season.
When the drivers’ reported base salaries came out earlier in the year, we have now weighed it up against their tallies for the year as a whole to see who has performed best against their value to the team – and who may be asking for a pay rise.
20: Kevin Magnussen, Haas, $5 million – $1,666,667 per point
The combination of an experienced driver and underperforming car is a theme in the early part of this, with Kevin Magnussen notching three points for Haas in 2023.
They will be hoping for a better year all around in 2024, with tyre wear issues having made the VF-23 a much better car in qualifying trim than when it mattered on race day.
19: Valtteri Bottas, Alfa Romeo, $10 million – $1,000,000 per point
Bottas moved to Alfa Romeo on the first multi-year deal of his career when he left Mercedes last year, with a handy salary packet befitting of his status as a multiple race winner along with it.
But the step back the Hinwil-based team have had in 2023 has seen his cost to the team per point go up significantly as a result, and he’ll be hoping for much better next year.
18: Logan Sargeant, Williams, $1 million – $1,000,000 per point
Sargeant’s long wait for his first point in Formula 1 finally ended in Austin once Charles Leclerc and Lewis Hamilton were disqualified, and without that he would not have qualified for this list at all.
But having improved his form as the year went on, the wait is on to see if Williams keep the faith with their Academy driver for the 2024 season alongside Alex Albon.
17: Daniel Ricciardo, AlphaTauri, $2.1 million – $350,000 per point*
With only seven races to go off, this probably isn’t the fairest reflection on Daniel Ricciardo’s potential after being drafted in to replace Nyck de Vries, and his subsequent injury lay-off for his broken hand after crashing at Zandvoort.
His wage at AlphaTauri and Red Bull is reportedly significantly lower than he became used to than his last spell there, along with big-money moves at Renault and McLaren, and it’s not yet known what he will be making with his full-time drive at AlphaTauri in 2024.
16: Zhou Guanyu, Alfa Romeo, $2 million – $333,333 per point
While he scored four fewer points than team-mate Bottas, Zhou Guanyu’s value for money is better due to his lower reported salary at Alfa Romeo.
All being well, he’ll finally get a chance to have a home race in China next season, with Covid-19 cancellations stopping him visiting the Shanghai International Circuit in front of his home crowd.
15: Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, $53.75 million [€50m] – $229,700 per point
One of the best-paid drivers on the grid, Lewis Hamilton’s new Mercedes deal reportedly brought him in line with Max Verstappen to give him pay parity with the current World Champion.
As a result of that, however, the underperformance of his Mercedes over the last two years has meant that the team have been getting better value for money on the other side of the garage on this specific metric – though the sheer amount of sponsorship income, accolades and gravitas Hamilton has brought to the team in the last decade more than makes up for it, and then some.
14: Nico Hulkenberg, Haas, $2 million – $222,222 per point
Both Magnussen and Hulkenberg struggled in race trim at Haas this season, but the comeback season for the German proved slightly more fruitful on race days, with his reportedly lower base salary and higher points tally proving of greater value to the team on this occasion.
He has more than justified his place on the grid with his qualifying form especially, and the duo will form one of the most experienced pairings in the paddock next year.
13: Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, $24 million – $116,504 per point
Charles Leclerc signed Ferrari’s longest-ever contract extension back in 2019, with that deal putting him among the sport’s highest earners and the team putting their long-term faith in him in the process.
Having been outscored by Carlos Sainz in their first season together, Leclerc’s excellent podium in Abu Dhabi saw him leapfrog his team-mate in the Drivers’ standings at the last to make it 2-1 in the season head-to-heads between them, with both drivers looking to extend their deals beyond the end of next year.
12: Alex Albon, Williams, $3 million – $111,111 per point
Alex Albon showed himself to be one of the stars of the 2023 season with how he performed at Williams, dragging the car to places others did not think were possible.
His points were absolutely vital in bringing them P7 in the Constructors’ Championship, which in prize money alone will make his salary worth every penny to the Grove-based team.
11: Esteban Ocon, Alpine, $6 million – $103,448 per point
Six retirements in 2023 did not help Esteban Ocon’s cause as he lost out to Pierre Gasly in the in-team battle at Alpine, with just four points separating the two come the end of the year.
He nestles into the midfield of this particular standing, as he did in the Drivers’ Championship this season.
10: Lando Norris, McLaren, $20 million – $97,560 per point
Even though he is one of the sport’s reported highest earners, Lando Norris has made it into the top 10 of the value-for-money list by way of his excellent performances for McLaren.
His seven podiums this year are a sure sign that his first win cannot be that far away, as he looks to cement his place among the sport’s elite.
9: Max Verstappen, Red Bull, $55 million – $95,652 per point
Given his colossal salary, there is only so much Max Verstappen could do to lower his cost per point – but given just how many points he scored in 2023, he did his level best to try.
He earned more than double anyone else’s tally on his way to his third World title, arguably justifying the salary he now commands on a contract that ties him to Red Bull until 2028.
8: Pierre Gasly, Alpine, $5 million – $80,645 per point
Narrowly ahead of Ocon in the Drivers’ standings and in this list, while he reportedly earned slightly less of a base salary than his Alpine team-mate, his four extra points put Pierre Gasly at number eight on this value-for-money chart.
A podium apiece at Alpine was their high point, but both drivers admitted their disappointment at not appearing from midfield obscurity on a more regular basis.
7: Carlos Sainz, Ferrari, $12 million – $60,000 per point
Reportedly on significantly less of a base salary than his Ferrari team-mate, the fact he scored only six fewer points than him in 2023 means Carlos Sainz will have cost Ferrari much less per point than Charles Leclerc.
The two drivers have been evenly-matched in their three years together and with both entering the final year of their contracts in 2024, both will be looking for the best deals possible if they are to continue with the Scuderia.
6: Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri, $1 million – $58,823 per point
Yuki Tsunoda enjoyed probably the best season of his career at AlphaTauri so far, in terms of consistency and how he extracted what he could from his machinery.
His Abu Dhabi drive saw him become only the second Japanese driver in history to lead a Grand Prix, and he will be looking to grow even further on the track next year.
5: George Russell, Mercedes, $8 million – $45,714 per point
Having out-scored Lewis Hamilton in 2022, George Russell finished 59 points behind the seven-time World Champion this time around, but after admitting Hamilton was likely on a “few extra zeros” on his deal, he has committed his long-term future to the team.
A pay rise to come with it has been likely, but to earn the biggest deals in Formula 1 he will be looking to build on his sole race victory from Sao Paulo in 2022.
4: Sergio Perez, Red Bull, $10 million – $35,087 per point
With the huge amount Red Bull are spending on Max Verstappen, it’s easy to forget Sergio Perez is still reportedly among the best-paid drivers on the grid himself.
And though he was well beaten by his team-mate in the title battle, his P2 finish in the Drivers’ Championship came at the fourth-best reported value for money per point on the grid.
3: Lance Stroll, Aston Martin, $2 million – $27,027 per point
Lance Stroll commands a salary towards the lower end of the scale on the grid, and his 74 points in 2023 puts him third cheapest on the grid in terms of reported base wage per point.
He appeared to close the gap to his illustrious team-mate at Aston Martin as the 2023 season drew to a close, but he was pipped in the value for money stakes…
2: Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin, $5 million – $24,271 per point
Like many aspects of his Formula 1 career, Fernando Alonso has proven to be the exception to the rule in this as well. He and Alex Albon are the only higher-paid drivers in their respective teams to record better price-per-point ratios to their teams in 2023, per their reported base salaries.
This is down to how much he was able to wring out of the AMR23 all year long, scoring almost treble Stroll’s points tally come season’s end and making him a safe pair of hands for Aston Martin to put their faith in – and it’s little wonder they want to extend his current deal beyond the end of 2024.
1: Oscar Piastri, McLaren, $2 million – $20,618 per point
Oscar Piastri’s impressive rookie season saw him take 97 points, a Sprint pole and victory, and he became the first driver since one Lewis Hamilton to score multiple podiums in his first year in F1.
It’s little wonder that McLaren tied him to a long-term contract until the end of 2026 as a result of his form, despite Lando Norris still showing his class as the experienced team leader, but even with a likely pay rise next year, Piastri showed up as F1’s reported best value-for-money driver in 2023.