CHARLES LECLERC has signed a five-year extension with Ferrari that puts the Frenchman under contract with the team through the 2029 season, according to a report by Italy’s La Gazetta dello Sport.

Leclerc’s contract had been set to expire at the end of 2024. The extension includes an annual raise of more than $27 million and then $54 million in the final year, according to the report.

The agreement also includes performance-related exit clauses that could enable Leclerc to negotiate an exit after 2027 if he’s not satisfied with the Scuderia’s performance in Formula 1.

The 26-year-old is coming off his fifth season with Ferrari’s F1 team, tying for fourth in the drivers’ standings with 206 points. That was six points ahead of teammate Carlos Sainz, who finished in seventh, with McLaren’s Lando Norris splitting the two with 205 points.

Ferrari also finished third in the constructors standings, just three points behind Mercedes and 104 clear of McLaren.

Leclerc rose through Ferrari’s Driver Academy and entered F1 with Sauber in 2018 before joining Ferrari the following year. He has accumulated 23 poles, the most of any driver in history without a world championship, and Leclerc failed to win a race in 2023.

While Sainz’s contract is set to expire after next season, the La Gazetta dello Sport report said that Ferrari is also engaged in extension talks with the Spaniard. Sainz won this year’s Singapore Grand Prix. - Reuters

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