Using his large platform to speak against racial and social injustice, Lewis Hamilton knelt while wearing the Black Lives Matter T-shirt in the front and wrote “End Racism” in the rest of the drivers.
Before the race, Ferrari driver Leclerc posted a series of tweets explaining why he preferred not to kneel next to his peers.
“All 20 drivers are united with their teams against racism and prejudices, at the same time embracing the principles of diversity, equality and inclusion, supporting Formula 1s and the FIA’s commitment.”
“I believe that the facts and behaviors are important in our daily lives, rather than the official gestures that can be seen as controversial in some countries. I will not take my knee, but this is to fight racism.”
Verstappen wrote the comments of Leclerc: “I am very committed to the fight against equality and racism. and supports each driver’s personal preferences. “
In all, six drivers chose not to kneel. The other four were Daniil Kvyat, Carlos Sainz, Antonio Giovinazzi and Kimi Raikkonen.
The different postures were very clear less than two weeks after Formula 1 launched its “We Are Racing As One” initiative aimed at tackling racism and inequality.
Just days after the initiative was launched, former F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone was condemned for his comments on racism.
Despite prolonged breaks before the start of the season, Valtteri Bottas continued on the normal service road with Mercedes to the top of the podium.
It looked like Mercedes had finished first and second place with two drivers, but Hamilton was given only four rounds from the end for Red Bull’s role in the collision with Alex Albon.
This made Leclerc second, and the young McLaren rider was third on his first podium in Formula 1 to Lando Norris.
Hamilton has not been able to win in Austria since 2016, his teammate Bottas took a win, and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen took the other two in the past few years.
Six times the world champion fought an uphill battle from off after being dropped from the second to the fifth on the grid less than an hour before the start of the race.
Hamilton was initially cleared by the officers for not being able to slow down for yellow flags during the elimination, but after the Red Bull’s complaint, he was given the last minute grill penalty.
New evidence for the banning of Red Bull is reported to be a video posted on Formula One’s Twitter account.
Red Bull boss Christian Horner said the images were released only by the race organizer on Sunday morning, so they were not available for investigation on Saturday.
Bottas gave an order to ignore the drama behind him and led the race from start to finish despite the pressure moments after the deployment of a number of security cars.
Verstappen seemed to be the only driver that could challenge the first two early, but electrical problems with the car forced the Dutch driver’s early retirement in the 11th round.
The race of four-time champion Sebastian Vettel ended after 31 rounds after colliding with Carlos Sainz, who took his place in Ferrari next year.
Seeing that a number of grand prixes have been canceled, the modified Formula 1 season continues with another race in Austria next weekend before heading to Hungary.
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