The seven-time Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton reacted on Tuesday to racist statements made by former Brazilian driver Nelson Piquet made about him, remembering that “those archaic attitudes must change.”
“They are more than words. Those archaic attitudes must change and have no place in our sport,” the Briton tweeted.
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“I have been surrounded by behaviors like that and been a goal (of them) all my life. There has been time to learn, now the time has come to take action,” added the Mercedes team driver, currently sixth in the 2022 World Championship.< /p>Gone with all
In a video interview granted to the Motorsports.com website. in October 2021,
Piquet, 69, recalled the incident he faced in July 2021 on the first lap of the British GP against Hamilton and the Dutchman Max Verstappen, which ended with the abandonment of the Red Bull driver, whose partner is
Piquet's daughter, Kelly.
“The black guy (Lewis Hamilton) put the car in and left it because he couldn't pass two cars in that corner. He played dirty. His luck was that only the other (Verstappen ) screwed up,” Piquet said.
Piquet's statements were condemned by the International Automobile Federation (FIA) and by Formula 1, organizer of the F1 World Championship.
“Discriminatory or racist statements are unacceptable in any form and have no place in society,” Formula 1 reacted in a statement sent to AFP.
“Lewis is an incredible ambassador for our sport and deserves respect,” says Formula 1 about the seven-time F1 champion.
“His tireless efforts to improve diversity and inclusion are a lesson to many and a commitment on the part of F1.”
“The FIA strongly condemns any racist language and behaviour, which have no place in our sport or society,” the FIA said on Twitter.
“We express our solidarity with Lewis Hamilton and our full support for his commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion in motorsport,” added the FIA. Mercedes, the British driver's team, also reacted on Twitter: “We condemn in the strongest terms any use of racist or discriminatory language of any kind.”
“Lewis has been at the forefront of our sport's efforts to combat racism, and is a true champion of diversity, on and off the track,” the text recalls. Hamilton became heavily involved with the “Black Lives Matter” movement in 2020.
Thanks to his initiative, several drivers posed with one knee on the ground before several races in support, and the color of Mercedes single-seaters went from gray to black until the end of the 2021 season.
“Together, we share a vision of a diversified and inclusive motor sport, and this incident marks the fundamental importance of continuing to fight for a better future”, says the Hamilton team since 2013.
Piquet was Formula 1 world champion three times (1981, 1983 and 1987).
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