After reports of abuse among fans at the 2022 Austrian Grand Prix, “We don’t want you, f*** off” was Toto Wolff‘s message to those accused of racism, sexism and homophobia.
Reports of abuse mainly from Dutch fans streamed in across the weekend prompting F1 to release and several drivers and personnel condemned the behaviour, including Verstappen, Lewis Hamilton and Christian Horner.
“If you’re a real Formula 1 fan, whatever team, whatever driver, you can’t be a racist, you can’t be homophobic because then you don’t fit Formula 1 and we don’t want you,” Wolff told the press after the race at the Red Bull Ring.
“On the other side, we need to be careful that just because there’s a few drunk dumbasses out there that haven’t comprehended how the world goes today, we shouldn’t condemn the 99.9 percent of fans that come here.”
“There’s always going to be these idiots around, I hope the rest can provide a good show… These ones can f*** off.”
Mercedes at the centre of abuse
One Hamilton fan was invited into the team garage during the race after being harassed by drunk spectators.
She had her dress lifted up and was told she didn’t deserve respect because she’s a Hamilton fan.
They also cheered both Hamilton and George Russell‘s crashes in qualifying, leading to criticism online.
However, when Hamilton recovered from the setback to claim third the Verstappen fans were respectful of him, allaying fears that he’d be booed on the podium.
“When you see how many Max fans are out there and they got the message and they behaved, they recognised how you behave sportsmen-like, you don’t need to cheer and they remained silent and that was good to see,” Wolff added.
“That the sport polarises and triggers emotions, we want that. But again we should condemn and put them out there that these huge idiots that are out there, to stay away from but all the others, it mustn’t come across that we’re condemning a group of fans.
“We need to target these guys and pick them out – this is also what Formula One has said and we had said, you need to report to security if you can.”