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Lewis Hamilton calls for action after Nelson Piquet’s racial slur

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Lewis Hamilton has called for action after comments where Nelson Piquet used racist language to describe him resurfaced.

Three-time world champion Piquet twice used racist language in an interview last November when describing the Mercedes star as he gave his verdict on Hamilton’s crash with Max Verstappen during last year’s British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

Yet in a tweet on Tuesday, Hamilton responded saying it was time for these “archaic mindsets” to change - and added that he has been targeted “by these attitudes my whole life”.

“It’s more than language,” he wrote. “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. There has been plenty of time to learn. Time has come for action.”

In an earlier tweet, Hamilton wrote in Portuguese: “Let’s focus on changing the mindset.”

It is understood that Piquet’s access to the paddock at F1 races could be revoked if he doesn’t issue a public apology to Hamilton, as reported by PA. Formula 1 and Mercedes also condemned the racist language used by Piquet.

“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,” they said in a statement.

“(Hamilton’s) tireless efforts to increase diversity and inclusion are a lesson to many and something we are committed to at F1.”

Hamilton’s team, constructors champions Mercedes, also released a statement, condeming the language and labelling Hamilton a “true champion of diversity on and off track.”

It read: “We condemn in the strongest terms any use of racist or discriminatory language of any kind. Lewis has spearheaded our sport’s efforts to combat racism, and he is a true champion of diversity on and off track.

“Together, we share a vision for a diverse and inclusive motorsport, and this incident underlines the fundamental importance of continuing to strive for a brighter future.”

Red Bull and Ferrari also condemned the racist slur, while Hamilton’s team-mate at Mercedes also responded: “Huge respect to Lewis Hamilton. He has done more for the sport than any driver in history, not just on track but off it.

“The fact that he and so many others are STILL having to deal with this behaviour is unacceptable. We all need to stand together against discrimination of any kind.”

The British Grand Prix takes place this weekend, with Verstappen in a commanding position at the top of the Championship leaderboard - 46 points clear of closest challenger Sergio Perez - while Hamilton is sixth in the standings, a mammoth 98 points behind the Dutchman after just nine races.

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