Lewis Hamilton insists he’ll throw his weight behind the Black Lives Matter movement until equality is secured. The F1 champion has this year established himself as one of the sporting world’s most prominent voices in the fight against racism and discrimination.
Hamilton has taken motorsport chiefs to task over the need to promote diversity in the industry and has received the backing of his Mercedes team.
The 35-year-old is currently piecing together a commission in his name which will investigate the lack of representation of minorities and go on to provide opportunities to more people from a broader array of backgrounds.
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Hamilton has used social media, where he has millions of followers, to voice his concerns and in June attended a peaceful Black Lives Matter march on the streets of London.
The Brit has worn a Black Lives Matter t-shirt while taking a knee as a show of solidarity prior to each of the first six Grands Prix of 2020.
Hamilton has been criticised because the message on his jersey does not match the ‘End Racism’ slogan shown on those of his rivals.
However, having worn the t-shirt prior to his victory at last weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix, he insists he will not change his stance.
“One day I hope we’ll all be seen as equal,” wrote Hamilton on Instagram, alongside images of him supporting the Black Lives Matter movement. “Until then, it’s #BlackLivesMatter always.”
Hamilton’s bid to promote equality convinced Mercedes to swap out their usual silver livery for a blacked-out version on the eve of the 2020 season.
Team principal Toto Wolff has praised the six-time champion for his work in trying to bring an end to racism and discrimination.
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Earlier this month, Hamilton said he would not be silenced by those who think he should just focus on his on-track exploits.
“I don’t ever listen to [the criticism],” said Hamilton. “Telling me to stop one thing is not going to stop me from doing it. And I hope, for everybody out there, nobody can tell you what to do, ultimately.
“I respect people’s opinions. The fact is, I live in this world – not just in this [F1] world – I live in the world. Everybody’s opinion matters.
“The thing for me is, I say one thing and it travels very, very far. That’s an unbelievable power that we have today in the media, being able to really push for change.
“I wake up and I’m like: ‘Yes, it’s great winning these World Championships. But what does that really mean?’ When you retire from racing and you have one, or two, god knows how many championships, what does it really mean? It doesn’t mean anything. It’s what you do with it. It’s the impact that you can have with it that really means something.”
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