'It's time for action': F1 champ Lewis Hamilton on being racially abused by former driver Nelson Piquet

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Tuesday, June 28, 2022, 06:30 PM IST
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Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton |

Seven-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton has called for action after video emerged of former racer Nelson Piquet using racist slur when speaking about the British driver.

Piquet was discussing a crash between Hamilton and Max Verstappen during last year's British Grand Prix when the 69-year-old Brazilian referenced the color of Hamilton's skin with a discriminatory term during a podcast in November.

Hamilton took to Twitter to vent his anger. “It’s more than language. These archaic mindsets need to change and have no place in our sport. I’ve been surrounded by these attitudes and targeted my whole life. There has been plenty of time to learn. Time has come for action,” he tweeted

Formula One too condemned racist language against the Mercedes driver.

Unacceptable behaviour

"Discriminatory or racist language is unacceptable in any form and has no part in society. Lewis is an incredible ambassador for our sport and deserves respect," F1 said in a statement on Tuesday. "His tireless efforts to increase diversity and inclusion are a lesson to many and something we are committed to at F1."

Hamilton is the only black driver in F1. The Brit has campaigned tirelessly to fight racism and has been outspoken on human rights abuses in countries where F1 goes racing.

Hamilton and most drivers took a knee before races in 2020 and 2021 as an anti-racism gesture. Hamilton also set up The Hamilton Commission to improve F1's diversity.

True champion

"We condemn in the strongest terms any use of racist or discriminatory language of any kind. Lewis has spearheaded our sport's efforts to combat racism, and he is a true champion of diversity on and off track," Mercedes said on Twitter.

"Together, we share a vision for a diverse and inclusive motorsport, and this incident underlines the fundamental importance of continuing to strive for a brighter future." Piquet clinched the F1 title three times in the 1980s and won 23 races. His daughter Kelly Piquet is Verstappen's girlfriend.

The British GP is this weekend.

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