Lewis Hamilton was the victim of racist abuse on social media after winning the British Grand Prix at Silverstone on Sunday.
Hamilton’s Mercedes team has come out in support of the 36-year-old, issuing a joint statement with the FIA, the sport’s governing body.
The statement read: ‘These people have no place in our sport. We urge that those responsible should be held accountable for their actions.
‘Formula One, the FIA, the drivers and the teams are working to build a more diverse and inclusive sport, and such unacceptable instances of online abuse must be highlighted and eliminated.’
Toto Wolff, Mercedes team principal, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: ‘We have seen it in the football in the European Championship and the abuse that is absolutely not acceptable, and the same yesterday, and I still question whether some just don’t get it.
‘This is not acceptable and we will react to it.’
Hamilton had been hit with a 10-second penalty during the race after a collision with Max Verstappen saw the Dutch driver crash out of the Grand Prix.
Verstappen labelled the Brit ‘dangerous’ and ‘disrespectful’ after the incident, but his team, Red Bull, have condemned the abuse Hamilton has suffered.
‘While we may be fierce rivals on-track, we are all united against racism,’ a Red Bull statement read. ‘We condemn racist abuse of any kind towards our team, our competitors and our fans.
‘There is never any excuse for it, there is certainly no place for it in our sport and those responsible should be held accountable.’
The racist abuse came in the form of a number of monkey and gorilla emojis sent to the world champion on Instagram.
In response to the abuse, Facebook, which owns Instagram, said in a statement: ‘The racist abuse directed at Hamilton during and after the British Grand Prix is unacceptable and we’ve removed a number of comments from Instagram.
‘In addition to our work to remove comments and accounts that repeatedly break our rules, there are safety features available, including comment filters and message controls, which can mean no one has to see this type of abuse.
‘No single thing will fix this challenge overnight but we’re committed to the work to keep our community safe from abuse.’
For more stories like this, check our sport page
Follow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
Source: Read Full Article