Lewis Hamilton has expressly welcomed the large fine against former Formula 1 world champion Nelson Piquet for his racist comments. “I still believe that we should generally not give people who are just full of hate a platform,” said the record champion on Thursday on the sidelines of the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne.
A court in Brazil ordered Piquet to pay five million Brazilian reals (almost 900,000 euros) last Friday. The money should benefit the fight against racism and equality for the LGBTQ+ community and be distributed to appropriate funds.
Former Formula 1 world champion Nelson Piquet faces a hefty fine for making racist remarks against Lewis Hamilton. picture alliance
Nelson Piquet’s daughter is in a relationship with Lewis Hamilton’s competitor Max Verstappen
Piquet racially insulted Hamilton in a scandalous interview in November 2021. He later apologized, but also tried to justify his choice of words. Later, a passage from the interview in which Piquet denigrated Hamilton in a homophobic context was made public. Formula 1 then declared Piquet persona non grata, and human rights groups also filed a complaint.
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Piquet’s daughter Kelly is in a relationship with the reigning world champion Max Verstappen, who literally fought a bitter fight for the title with Hamilton until the last lap of the season in 2021.
“Racism and homophobia are unacceptable and have no place in our society. That’s why I think it’s great that they showed that they stand for something,” said Hamilton before the third race of the season (Sunday, 7 a.m. CEST / Sky).
Formula 1: Lewis Hamilton swears loyalty to Mercedes
In terms of sport, the 38-year-old with Mercedes is a good distance away from Verstappen and his Red Bull team this year. Nevertheless, the 103-time Grand Prix winner once again swore allegiance to his racing team. “I continue to feel very, very comfortable, it’s a family. I see myself at Mercedes until my last days,” said Hamilton, whose contract expires at the end of the season.
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At the start of the season at the beginning of March, he had already declared that a contract extension was out of the question for him. Talks have not yet started. Hamilton has been driving for Mercedes since 2013, with the factory team he won six of his seven drivers’ titles. (aw/sid)
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