Lewis Hamilton has hailed the government of Brazil for their handling of Nelson Piquet after his racist comments against the seven-time Formula 1 world champion.
Piquet used a racial slur when talking about Hamilton during a debate following the controversial collision between the Mercedes driver and Max Verstappen at the 2021 British Grand Prix.
Brazilian courts ruled that Piquet would have to pay 5 million Reals (£780,000) in damages as a result of his language, and Hamilton said he was glad he has been held accountable for his actions.
“Back when it happened, I made comments on it,” Hamilton told the media ahead of the Australian GP. “I still believe that, generally, we shouldn’t be giving people that are just full of hate a platform.
“I’d like to acknowledge the Brazil government because I think it’s really amazing what they have done in holding someone accountable and showing people that it’s not tolerated.
Call for more
More and more governments are beginning to properly force hate out of their countries as best they can, and Hamilton said he wanted to see more countries act.
The Mercedes driver highlighted Uganda’s recent steps as well as several African countries and those in the Middle East where human rights have been a global topic of discussion in recent years.
“Racism and homophobia is not acceptable and there is no place for it in our society so I love that (Brazil) have shown they stand for something,” Hamilton said.
“I wish that more governments out there would do that, such as we’ve just seen in Uganda, and so many other countries in Africa and the Middle East that we can learn a lot from.”
F1’s arrival in Saudi Arabia and Qatar caused a number of questions to be raised and those were only heightened by the Football World Cup in Qatar during November and December.