- Lewis Hamilton was racially abused online after his victory at Sunday’s British Grand Prix.
- The Mercedes driver had collided with title rival Max Verstappen during the race’s first lap.
- “These people have no place in our sport,” said a joint statement from Mercedes, F1, and the FIA.
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Lewis Hamilton was racially abused online after his victory at Sunday’s British Grand Prix.
The Mercedes driver was given a 10-second penalty after a collision with race leader and title rival Max Verstappen during the first lap, which led to the Dutchman crashing out and being taken to hospital.
Hamilton went on to overtake Charles Leclerc on the penultimate lap and record an eighth career win at Silverstone.
The crash, and Hamilton’s subsequent victory, triggered a wave of racial abuse against arguably F1’s greatest ever driver.
Messages including monkey emojis and other racial slurs were sent as replies to an Instagram post by Mercedes celebrating Hamilton’s win.
“These people have no place in our sport,” read a joint statement from Mercedes, Formula One and its governing body, the FIA, following the abuse.
“We urge that those responsible should be held accountable for their actions.
“Formula One, 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.”
Facebook, which owns Instagram, said in a statement: “The racist abuse directed at Hamilton during and after the British Grand Prix is unacceptable and we’ve removed a number of comments from Instagram.
“In addition to our work to remove comments and accounts that repeatedly break our rules, there are safety features available, including comment filters and message controls, which can mean no one has to see this type of abuse.
“No single thing will fix this challenge overnight but we’re committed to the work to keep our community safe from abuse.”
The racial abuse directed at Hamilton comes just a week after a number of England’s Black soccer players were targeted online following the country’s penalty shootout defeat to Italy in the final of Euro 2020.
Jadon Sancho, Marcus Rashford, and Bukayo Saka were all racially abused after they missed their spot kicks.
Hamilton was among those to condemn the abuse last week, calling it “disgusting.”
“This sort of ignorance has to be stopped,” he said on Instagram. “Tolerance and respect for players of color should not be conditional. Our humanity should not be conditional.”
He has yet to comment publicly on the abuse he himself suffered after Sunday’s race.