Formula One great Lewis Hamilton said “archaic mindsets” have to change after retired champion Nelson Piquet reportedly used a racial slur against him.
Hamilton’s comments came after F1 and FIA condemned racist language.“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,” Hamilton tweeted on Tuesday. “There has been plenty of time to learn. Time has come for action.”
He also wrote in Portuguese, “Vamos focar em mudar a mentalidade” and responded to another tweet which used an expletive about Piquet, a 69-year-old Brazilian who won three F1 titles.
Piquet was discussing a crash between Hamilton and Max Verstappen during last year's British Grand Prix when Piquet referenced the color of Hamilton's skin with a discriminatory term in November on a YouTube podcast named Enerto.
“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,” F1 said in a statement.
“His tireless efforts to increase diversity and inclusion are a lesson to many and something we are committed to at F1.”
Hamilton has campaigned tirelessly to fight racism and has been outspoken on human rights abuses in countries where F1 goes racing.
“The FIA strongly condemns any racist or discriminatory language and behaviour, which have no place in sport or wider society,” the FIA said.
“We express our solidarity with @LewisHamilton and fully support his commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion in motor sport.”