Lewis Hamilton asks why Vitaly Petrov was named Portuguese GP steward

Lewis Hamilton said he was “surprised” by the FIA’s appointment of Vitaly Petrov as steward at the Portuguese GP this weekend after controversial comments from the former F1 driver.

Petrov makes his debut on the incumbent jury of the four stewards as driver representative after appearing at 57 Grand Prix in 2010/12.

But comments attributed to the 36-year-old in a recent interview with the Russian Outlet Championship sparked controversy after Petrov was quoted as having questioned the knee injury prior to the races and said Hamilton was wearing a Breonna at the Tuscany GP Taylor t shirt. ” too much”.

Petrov was also quoted as saying, “What if one of the drivers comes out gay? Are they going to go out with a rainbow flag and push everyone else to get gay or something? ”

Vitaly Petrov became Russia's first F1 driver while driving for Lotus and Caterham and finishing on the podium at the 2011 Australian GP

Vitaly Petrov became Russia's first F1 driver while driving for Lotus and Caterham and finishing on the podium at the 2011 Australian GP

Vitaly Petrov became Russia’s first F1 driver while driving for Lotus and Caterham and finishing on the podium at the 2011 Australian GP

The remarks were communicated to Hamilton at the FIA ​​press conference in Portimao on Thursday.

“I haven’t seen all of the quotations, obviously you only recited some of them,” replied Hamilton, a powerful voice demanding equality and diversity.

“So yeah, of course I’d say a surprise to see that they’d hire someone who has these beliefs and speaks so loudly about things we want to fight.

“So you should really take them on, it’s not something I can particularly do about it. But we should definitely include people here who are up with the times, who understand the times we live in, and are sensitive to the matters that surround us.

19:01
Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas spoke ahead of the Portuguese Grand Prix at the weekend

Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas spoke ahead of the Portuguese Grand Prix at the weekend

“So I don’t quite understand what their goal is or why he’s especially here because it’s not that they don’t have other good options.”

The FIA ​​said in a statement: “The FIA ​​will appoint driver stewards with the appropriate Formula 1 experience and expertise to perform this function at the highest level and who have expressed an interest in the FIA ​​to be a driver steward be.

“The Federation will not discriminate in this process on the basis of views expressed outside of its role as FIA steward, provided that such statements do not violate FIA ​​regulations and the Code of Ethics.”

19:01
Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas spoke ahead of the Portuguese Grand Prix at the weekend

Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas spoke ahead of the Portuguese Grand Prix at the weekend

The FIA ​​and F1 have reaffirmed their respective commitments to improve diversity and opportunity in sport. At the beginning of this year, F1 launched the We Race as One initiative together with a task force and a foundation to expand inclusion.

The sport is holding an anti-racism demonstration on the grid before the races. Drivers in T-shirts are calling for an end to racism, with the majority also taking a knee.

Hamilton has set up a commission on his own behalf to understand the barriers to entry for young people from different backgrounds to enter motorsport.

Valtteri Bottas, Hamilton’s Mercedes team-mate, said: “As Lewis said, we should all have the same attitude towards the things we are moving forward. I don’t know any details [of what was said]. „

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