Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton celebrate with the Mercedes team after finishing first and second respectively  at the Spanish Grand Prix on Sunday.

By Paul Weaver/The Guardian

Lewis Hamilton’s protracted contract negotiations with Mercedes are likely to come to a conclusion in Monaco next week, with the world champion ready to sign a three-year deal worth £130mn.
Talks have been going on since last year to extend Hamilton’s existing three-year deal, which expires at the end of this season. Hamilton will be doubling his money as he moves ahead of Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Vettel as the best paid driver in the sport. “I will have some news for you in Monaco,” he said after his second place in Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix.
A story at the weekend suggesting talks had stalled was quickly dismissed by Hamilton. “That’s not the case,” he said. Money has always been the main issue during the negotiations which, according to Hamilton, have been in their final stages for more than two months. But another possible sticking point is that the driver wants to keep all the trophies he has won, something denied him during his six years at McLaren.
He is bargaining from a strong base; he won the world championship last year, his second title, and is expected to make it three this season. He is also F1’s outstanding box office attraction.
He was subdued on Sunday evening but he claimed he had not been disheartened by Nico Rosberg’s ninth grand prix win and his first since Brazil last year. “I feel great. I honestly feel really good,” he said. “I don’t look at it as a setback. It wasn’t the perfect weekend. But I had to face some problems. Lots of things were up against me.”
The poor balance of his car hurt him on Saturday, possibly costing him pole position. Then, on race day, he got off to a bad start on the dirty side of the track before being further punished by some untidy pit-stops, while Rosberg’s afternoon was as smooth as a snooker table.
When asked if the result had been a wake-up call, Hamilton added: “I don’t feel I needed a wake-up call because I won the last race. The fact is in life you can’t win everything. So [complacency] is absolutely not the situation. I was pushing all weekend. I worked as hard as I could. I just didn’t get it right. I didn’t get the set-up right for qualifying.
“But I came second. I don’t really feel like I lost one. Naturally I didn’t win. But I drove a race which I felt I won. I did a three-stop. I pushed all the way. So I feel amazing right now. It could have been a lot worse. I could have come third or fourth.”
So now he is preparing for Monaco, where Rosberg won last year after being accused of deliberately spoiling Hamilton’s chances of winning pole. “For the past two years I’ve had the car to win. The first year I struggled with it. Last year I had the pace but other things were up against it. This year, hopefully, it will be different. Third time lucky.”Hamilton seems destined not to win the championship easily. When he did lift the trophy, in 2008 and last year, it went to the last race of the season.
Rosberg could become champion this year but not without, one feels, a degree of co-operation from his great rival. Hamilton is not accident-prone exactly. But he is incident-prone. If he is beaten it is more likely to be by himself than anyone else.