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Hamilton questions appointment of Petrov as race steward

NEWS STORY
22/10/2020

Lewis Hamilton has questioned the appointment of former Lotus driver, Vitaly Petrov as a race steward when told of comments the Russian had previously made regarding the Briton's T-Shirt protest at Mugello.

Following the Tuscan Grand Prix, during the post-race interviews and during the podium ceremony, the world champion wore a T-Shirt declaring "arrest the cops who killed Breonna Taylor".

At today's press conference, a Sun journalist repeated comments Petrov made in reaction to the T-Shirt, while asking Hamilton is he thought it appropriate that the man who made them should be appointed as an FIA steward.

"For me, this t-shirt, on top of calling for everyone to kneel, was too much," Sun journalist, Ben Hunt quoted the Russian as saying. "It is a personal matter for every adult.

"You have the right to speak out on social media or give interviews, but I think the US government is well aware of these problems already.

"But to call on that in Formula One itself, I think half of the spectators didn't even know what the shirt was about until it was explained to them.

"And let's say a driver admits to being gay, will they come out with a rainbow flag and urge everyone to become gay as well? I think the FIA will no longer allow such behaviours."

Reacting to the comments, Hamilton said: "I've not seen all of the quotes, but obviously you've just recited some of them so yes of course I would say that's a surprise that they would be hiring someone that has those beliefs and is so vocal about things that we're trying to fight against.

"So you should take it up with them really," he added, referring to the FIA, "there's nothing that I can particularly do about it.

"But we should definitely be including people here who are with the times, who are understanding of the times that we are living in and sensitive to the matters that are surrounding us.

"So I don't really understand what their goal is or why particularly he's here because it's not like they don't have any other good options."

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Italian Job, 23/10/2020 20:47

"So LH disapproves of Petrov's not liking the t-shirt at Mugello? As if Petrov is the only one!
I've said it before, he's the best of the current crop (helped by Team Mercedes). But he really ought not to be allowed to speak without a minder - if only to prove that (hopefully) he has been misquoted."

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2. Posted by flyinglap, 23/10/2020 16:33

"Younger fans might find educational looiking up 'radical chic' and 'cultural marxism' on wikipedia. Hamilton might be getting richer now and in the short term by engaging in woke politics, but in the long run he will alienate the majority of motorsport fans. Regarding his 'taking the knee' I would very much like to see if he would do it on the podium to the tune of 'God save the Queen', but I am sure that it will never happen; he may be naive, but he is not stupid. How about just racing now and in the future? Enough of this nonsense."

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3. Posted by Quickdraw, 23/10/2020 14:16

"World media is silent about the brutal murders of white South African farmers. The EFF and BLF make daily calls for the murder of white farmers and encourage their followers to take the farmers' land from them. This week hundreds of thousands of hectares of land, buildings and livestock were put to the torch after calls by the EFF leadership, encouraging violence and brutality. Brendin Horner, a 21 year old farm manager was beaten, stabbed, strangled to death and left hanging from a fencepost on his farm. A white protester, who organised protest action to protest this murder is being jailed for his trouble, whilst the murderer is granted bail for an amount that would buy a second hand television set. We live in an evil world where the media plays the tune that the powerful want us to hear, and the ignorant buy the storyline time and time again. I have my own opinions about BLM and they don't belong here. Politics and social crusades have no place in sport. There are many other appropriate platforms. Lewis Hamilton should respect the fact that some people don't agree with his views and leave it at that. How Petrov's views affect his abilities as a race steward is difficult to connect, especially given the fact that Hamilton chose to use F1 as a platform to further the cause in the first place. What does he expect? That everyone should keep quiet and agree with him?"

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4. Posted by Spindoctor, 23/10/2020 11:51

"Ironically by making the comments he did, Petrov is doing precisely what he accuses Hamilton of: namely bringing Politics to F1.
His antagonism to BLM seems odd. Supporting the slogan doesn't imply or suggest that other lives don't matter - that is an inference purely in the eye of the beholder. BLM is drawing attention to long-standing historical discrimination and violence against Black Americans.
Like the Civil Rights movement in the 1960's it is peaceful in intent and a legitimate expression of views in a nominally democratic Nation. The heavily armed far-right pseudo-militias seem better equipped to engage in 'violence' than the thousands of unarmed BLM demonstrators.

I can't see where Hamilton is "forcing his views" on to anyone. The decision to support BLM and ask drivers to 'take the knee' (some don't) was made by FIA and Hamilton's response is:
'...So you should take it up with them really," he added, referring to the FIA, "there's nothing that I can particularly do about it.'



"

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5. Posted by jcr, 23/10/2020 10:16

"Hamilton has been allowed to attain a position of power within the sport because of his dominance. no matter what happens, rules dont appear to apply to him.
EG. When he pulled the tee shirt stunt on the podium, the FIA imposed some rules re dress code.
All agreed to demonstrate against racism on the grid, Knee or no knee is personal.
All the drivers wear the anti racism tee shirt, Except for one.
Hamiltom wears a Black Lives Matter shirt, How can this be a show of unity.
IMO. BLM is (at best) a semi political movement
One rule for Hamilton, Another for the rest.
"

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6. Posted by Greg, 23/10/2020 9:33

"Fully agree with @Simon, @Kenji and @gt3bill. People can have their views by all means but don't try to push it right through the sport. They have done nothing about human rights issues in some of the countries they race in or protest about it, but push all the might for BLM because Hamilton wants that. All lives matter no matter what colour or race you are. Same as your basic human rights. Male or female."

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7. Posted by Motorsport-fan, 23/10/2020 9:05

"Cannot agree with Petrov comments more, everyone has the right to free speech exept when you disagree with comments made by Lewis."

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8. Posted by Simon in Adelaide, 23/10/2020 4:04

"This insidious woke tokenism is being driven by social media trolls and the damage that they seem to be able to inflict on someone who does not conform to their current narrative and its reporting in the mainstream media.

If the mainstream media did not feel so insecure and treated the Twittersphere with the contempt that all the self-righteous egotistical attention seekers deserve then the World would be a much happier place.

"

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9. Posted by Superbird70, 23/10/2020 2:08

"Yes, you are free to speak freely in Russia just be careful who brews your tea."

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10. Posted by gt3bill, 23/10/2020 1:25

"another hamilton political statement that should not be part of any F1 event, period!!!! ..here is a tip hammy.."all lives matter" ..as riki would say "shut up and drive", that is what your good at. cant wait for his first record deal to crash......or his line of clothing, or his perfume line, ..just get in the car and drive ... watching him now in the winners podium has become mundane....i liked it better when he had some life in him, like when he won with mclaren ........ "

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11. Posted by kenji, 22/10/2020 23:58

"@ Editor...Thank you for posting my comments. There are many sites that would not allow such freedom of expression. Your enlightened attitude is to be congratulated. Well done."

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12. Posted by Superbird70, 22/10/2020 23:19

"Honestly I think there is still some animosity left over from 'Cars 2' at play here."

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13. Posted by kenji, 22/10/2020 23:17

"Hamilton has no right to force his opinions on anyone. Yes, he's free to express his own opinions but he should also extend that right to others who have equal rights. In fact the BLM campaign should never have been allowed to take place in F1 at all. It has no place in F1. It is a political movement that sanctions violence to support their ideology as witnessed in the recent destruction of US cities. I have no problem with equality based on merit, in fact i support it 100%. What i object to is being told that i don't have a voice unless i agree with the so called 'woke progressives'. "

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14. Posted by USA1, 22/10/2020 23:02

"I agree with Petrov I’m not interested in the politics I’m here to watch F1 not what’s good or bad, I can watch the news for that if I wanted too!"

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15. Posted by jcr, 22/10/2020 22:24

"Has anybody else objected ???"

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