LEWIS HAMILTON’s Mercedes team are expected to announce the backing of the UK’s fifth-richest man, Sir Jim Ratcliffe.
The chemicals billionaire is understood to be confirmed as part of a three-way ownership set-up along with Mercedes and their current Head of Motorsport, Toto Wolff.
The move is a boost to the F1 world champions, who currently have Ratcliffe’s INEOS firm as one of their partners.
The announcement is with Ola Källenius, who is Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG, and Wolff.
Ratcliffe, estimated to be worth over £13billion, will add the F1 team to his company’s sports portfolio.
His acquisitions also include French football giants, Nice, cycling team Ineos Grenadiers and the British entrant to the Americas Cup.
The move will also see Wolff cement his place in the team as co-owner after speculation about his future.
However, the Brackley-based group are yet to reveal whether he will remain as Head of Motorsport after he initially said he was reconsidering his role in the team.
Wolff, who has guided the team to seven straight titles, has previously admitted he has found his successor.
His team have also been boosted by news that Lewis Hamilton is due to sign a new £40million contract with Mercedes in the coming days.
The F1 giants have taken to social media in anticipation of tying the seven-times world title-winning Brit down to a new deal.
And Hamilton looks set to attempt to win a record-breaking EIGHTH world title in 2021
His bid will commence on March 21 at the start of what is expected in the longest season in F1 history.