Skip to main content

Formula 1 World Reacts To Former Champion's Punishment

A general view of the Formula 1 Grand Prix of Canada.

MONTREAL, QUEBEC - JUNE 19: A general view of the action during the F1 Grand Prix of Canada at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on June 19, 2022 in Montreal, Quebec. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Back in November, former Formula 1 driver Nelson Piquet used a racial slur when speaking about Lewis Hamilton. On Wednesday, he was disciplined for his comments

ESPN is reporting that Piquet has been banned indefinitely from visiting the F1 paddock because of his comments about Hamilton.

Piquet has released a statement on this situation. He claims his comments about Hamilton had no racist intent. 

"What I said was ill thought out, and I make no defense for it, but I will clarify that the term used is one that has widely and historically been used in Brazilian Portuguese for a synonym for 'guy' or 'person' and was never intended to offend," Piquet said, via ESPN. "I would never use the word I have been accused of in some translations.

"I strongly condemn any suggestion that the word was used by me with the aim of belittling a driver because of his skin color. I apologize wholeheartedly to anyone that was affected, including Lewis, who is an incredible driver, but the translation in some media that is now circulating on social media is not correct. Discrimination has no place in F1 or society and I am happy to clarify my thoughts in that respect." 

Judging by the reactions on social media, Formula 1 fans agree with the punishment that Piquet received. 

Hamilton, one of the most accomplished drivers of his generation, took to Twitter to share his thoughts on this disappointing situation.

"It’s more than language," Hamilton tweeted. "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."

Countless drivers and racing teams have come out this week to support Hamilton.