McLaren confirms Hamilton until 2012

Vodafone McLaren Mercedes has confirmed that Lewis Hamilton will stay with the team for at least five years. The announcement was made by McLaren Group chairman and chief executive Ron Dennis.

"Given Lewis’s performances over the course of the 2007 season, it is clear that improved financial terms were fully deserved and this formed part of the friendly negotiations with Lewis’s manager Anthony Hamilton," Dennis said. "The announcement will take the length of our relationship with Lewis to a total of 15 years, which we believe is among the longest running associations between a sportsman and a team in the history of sport, particularly motorsport. This is a great achievement for everyone involved, including Anthony. Lewis is an exceptional human being, on both a personal and professional level, and will continue to be a credit to this team."

Hamilton is obviously delighted with the news as it will make him a multi-millionaire.

The news comes amid many rumours that Mercedes-Benz is poised to take over the team but it is interesting that Dennis's profile in the announcement is much higher than at the launch of the new car, although that was perhaps understandable given that the event was taking place in Stuttgart.

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