Lewis Hamilton targeted with racist abuse following British Grand Prix win
World Champion receives racial abuse on Instagram
Lewis Hamilton has faced racist abuse online hours after winning the British Grand Prix. Despite a setback caused by a collision with world championship leader Max Verstappen, Hamilton's ten second time penalty did not hold him back.
Verstappen was taken to the hospital for precautionary checks.
Though many comments congratulated the eight-time champion, others criticised the crash. Commentors employed monkey emojis to abuse the champion, posting them alongside criticisms of his performance or the crash with Verstappen.
Formula One has released a joint statement with the FIA and Hamilton's team Mercedes-AMG Petronas condemning the abuse:
"During, and after, yesterday’s British Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton was subjected to multiple instances of racist abuse on social media following an in-race collision.
"Formula 1, The FIA and Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team condemn this behaviour in the strongest possible terms.
"These people have no place in our sport and we urge that those responsible should be held accountable for their actions.
"Formula 1, the FIA, the drivers and the teams are working to build a more diverse and inclusive sport, and such unacceptable instances of online abuse must be highlighted and eliminated."
Last year Hamilton slammed Formula One over a lack of racial diversity. In an Instagram post, he said:
"I see those of you staying silent, some of you the biggest stars yet you stay in the midst of injustice.
"Not a sign from anybody in my industry which, of course is a white-dominated sport. I'm one of the only people of colour there yet I stand alone. I would have thought by now you would see why this happens and say something about it but you can't stand alongside us.
"Just know I know who you are and I see you."
Hamilton himself commented on the Euros final:
"So much was running through my mind as a watched the final moments of the match last night. On one hand I was so proud of how far we have come ...to be in the final and with such a diverse team is a huge achievement we should all be proud of but as the players stepped up to take the penalties I was worried.
"The pressure to deliver is felt by every sportsperson but when you are a minority representing your country this is a layered experience.
"Success would feel like a double victory, but a miss feels like a two-fold failure when its compounded with racist abuse.
I so badly wanted that win like all of you but for me it was for much more than winning the Euros, it was a much bigger picture.
"However, the disgusting behaviour by the few, shows how much work that still needs to be done. I hope that this opens a conversation around acceptance.
"We must work towards a society that doesn’t require Black players to prove their value or place in society only through victory. Ultimately everyone on the England team should be so proud of their achievement and how they represented us.