F1 needs to do more: Hamilton calls for support for anti-racism movement
Mogyorod (Hungary), July 20 (IANS): Six-time world champion Lewis Hamilton has lashed out at Formula One leaders and his fellow drivers for not doing enough to support the ongoing ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement.
On Sunday, Hamilton, who won from pole position to take the championship lead after three races, again took a knee while wearing a Black Lives Matter T-shirt.
“Today I raced for everyone out there who is pushing to make positive change and fight inequality, however, sadly, as a sport we need to do so much more. It is embarrassing that many teams have not made any public commitment to diversity or that we couldn’t properly find time to make a symbolic gesture in support of ending racism before the race,” Hamilton wrote in a post on Instagram.
“Today felt rushed and massively lacked organisation and effort, which in turn dilutes the message and makes it seem like there was something more important. It doesn’t matter if you stand or kneel, but we should be showing the world that F1 is united in its commitment to equality and inclusivity.
“F1 and the FIA need to do more. There is no quick fix for racial inequality, but it is certainly something that we can’t just acknowledge once and then move on. We have to stay focussed, keep highlighting the problem, and hold those with the power accountable,” he added.
On Sunday before the start of the race, only eight of the 15 who turned up on time joined Hamilton in kneeling. According to the Briton, it was a rushed anti-racism gesture by some of the drivers.
“Moving forwards we need to speak to Formula One,” Hamilton told Sky Sports television. “They need to do a better job. It was such a rush.
“I was getting out of the car, running over, and quickly taking the knee.
“They (F1) need to do more, and I don’t know why they only did it for the first race at the start, they’ve not done it since then,” he added.
Before the season-opener in Austria, Formula One had allocated time for drivers to show support for the Black Lives Matter movement but not for the second race at the Red Bull Ring or in Hungary.
“They’ve come out saying they’re going to be fighting for diversity and ‘End Racism’, but they’re not giving us the platform to continue that because it’s all rushed,” said the six-time world champion.
“I think they can give us more time. I’ll probably send an email over the next couple of days, try to coordinate with them. They do want to do it, it’s just I guess there was not good enough communication,” he added.