The seven-time Formula 1 champion, Lewis Hamilton, spoke on Tuesday 28, about the comments of the former Brazilian pilot Nelson Piquet referring to him.
In an interview with journalist Ricardo Oliveira, held in November 2021, which returned to the internet this Tuesday, Piquet uses the term ‘neguinho’ to refer to the British pilot. The commentary compared the accident involving Hamilton and Max Verstappen at the Silverstone Grand Prix (GP) in England and Ayrton Senna and Alain Prostin 1990, at the start of the Japanese GP.
“The little nigga [Lewis Hamilton] put the car in and didn’t leave [desviar]. Senna didn’t do that. Senna left straight away. The nigga put the car in and didn’t let [Verstappen desviar]. The little black guy left the car because he couldn’t pass two cars on that curve. He made a joke. His luck was that only the other [Verstappen] fucked up He did a hell of a lot of shit”, criticized the Brazilian three-time world champion.
I admit that for many years I had Nelson Piquet as an idol. Today I am deeply ashamed, he is a disgusting being, bolsonarista, sexist, reactionary and RACIST. The way he refers to Lewis Hamilton, calling him “the little nigger”, is DEPLORABLE as well as criminal. pic.twitter.com/zum9S6ud4s
— Rodrigo (Toothpick) Cebrian (@rodcebrian) June 22, 2022
On his Twitter account, after the repercussion of Piquet’s speech, the Brit replied in Portuguese, “Let’s focus on changing the mindset”.
And he added that this attitude has no place in the automobile industry: “It’s more than language. These archaic mindsets need to change and have no place in our sport. I have been surrounded by these attitudes and visions all my life. There is a lot of time to learn. The time has come to act.”
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.
— Lewis Hamilton (@LewisHamilton) June 28, 2022
The repercussion also reached the representatives of the formula 1gives International Automobile Federation (FIA) and gives mercedeswho repudiated the use of the term racist.
“The FIA strongly condemns any racist or discriminatory language and behavior, which has no place in sport or society at large. We express our solidarity with Lewis Hamilton and fully support his commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion in motorsport.”
“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. His tireless efforts to increase diversity and inclusion are a lesson to many and something we are committed to at F1.”
Hamilton’s Mercedes team also took a stand against any kind of discrimination and received support from Ferrari representatives. On the subject, the seven-time champion even responded to a fan comment that said “[Se Hamilton] just tweet ‘who is Nelson Piquet?’ and then shut down Twitter.” He replied to the post saying, “Imagine.”
It is the second time this year that the multi-champion has been the target of discriminatory attacks. The first, in April, concerns the offensive posts of a McLaren employee after Hamilton was replaced by George Russell for the Sakhir GP.
“What a real idiot he is! He can’t see anyone getting along, ”says the publication of the employee who is being investigated in court secrecy.
McLaren has positioned itself on social media. “We consider these comments to be completely at odds with our values and culture at McLaren. We take the matter very seriously and are investigating it as a priority.”
Already in 2021, the driver received death threats and a barrage of racist abuse after the accident with Dutchman Max Verstappen. At the time, despite the accident and the punishment that Hamilton received, the Dutchman qualified in first place.