Hamilton: Ecclestone's racism comments 'ignorant and uneducated'

By Sports Desk June 27, 2020

Lewis Hamilton believes Bernie Ecclestone's comments on racism show why Formula One failed to address the issue in the past.

Former F1 boss Ecclestone, 89, suggested in a CNN interview that little could be done about diversity in the sport during his time in charge.

Ecclestone said there were "lots of cases" where black people were more racist than white people, and said in Formula One he doubted whether there was "any concern" about the issue as a whole.

Six-time champion Hamilton branded the remarks "ignorant and uneducated" after F1 issued a statement to condemn them.

"I just don't even know where to start with this one. So sad and disappointing to read these comments," Hamilton wrote on Instagram.

"Bernie is out of the sport and a different generation but this is exactly what is wrong – ignorant and uneducated comments which show us how far we as a society need to go before real equality can happen.

"It makes complete sense to me now that nothing was said or done to make our sport more diverse or to address the racial abuse I received throughout my career.

"If someone who has run the sport for decades has such a lack of understanding of the deep rooted issues we as black people deal with every day, how can we expect all the people who work under him to understand. It starts at the top.

"Now the time has come for change. I will not stop pushing to create an inclusive future for our sport with equal opportunity for all.

"To create a world that provides equal opportunity for minorities. I will continue to use my voice to represent those who don’t have one, and to speak for those who are underrepresented to provide an opportunity to have a chance in our sport."

Hamilton then shared photos from pre-season testing at Barcelona in 2008, when a group of spectators in blackface wore tops with 'Hamilton's family' written on them.

He added: "I remember this like it was yesterday. The damage things like this do to people is unacceptable."

Hamilton has set up a commission to increase diversity in motorsport, while F1 announced on Thursday the details of a new task force and foundation with the same aim.

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