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Lewis Hamilton criticizes Formula One for ‘lacking leadership’ in the fight against racism

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Lewis Hamilton says Formula One must do more in the fight against racism as he criticized some of his rival drivers for not taking the issue seriously enough.

The 35-year-old’s comments came after he won the Hungarian Grand Prix on Sunday where he was left frustrated by the lack of unity on display.

Hamilton wore a Black Lives Matter T-shirt as he took the knee ahead of the race but many other drivers arrived late to the demonstration, which has been staged before the last three races, or remained standing.

“There is definitely not enough support for it,” Hamilton told reporters, according to PA Media. “It is like it has gone off the agenda. It is lacking leadership.

“From a drivers’ point of view, many seem to be of the opinion they’ve done it once and they’re not going to do it again.”

The reigning world champion called the lack of togetherness “embarrassing” in a social media post after the race and urged the sport’s governing bodies to have more focus.

“As a sport we need to do so much more. It is embarrassing that many teams have not made any public commitment to diversity or that we couldn’t properly find time to make a symbolic gesture in support of ending racism before the race,” he wrote on Instagram.

“Today felt rushed and massively lacked organization and effort, which in turn dilutes the message and makes it seem like there was something more important.”

CNN has contacted the Grand Prix Drivers’ Association for comment but has yet to receive a response.

READ: Lewis Hamilton, Formula One’s voice and conscience

F1 underlines commitment

The Mercedes driver also said he would contact FIA’s president Jean Todt to encourage the sport to deliver a more coherent message.

“We have not made any progress. We have not changed anything. You need a leader. Where is Jean [Todt] in that scenario?

“It shouldn’t be down to me to call the teams out for not being accountable on the issue. That should come from the top down and the higher powers, who pull the strings.”

FIA, motorsport’s governing body, has reaffirmed its commitment to fighting global racism and recently pledged one million euros to boost diversity in the sport.

Formula One released a statement in response to Hamilton’s latest comments, underlining its dedication to fighting all forms of discrimination.

“Ending racism and increasing diversity and inclusion in F1 is a clear priority and something everyone supports,” it read.

“We set out our plans for diversity and inclusion last November and have in recent weeks announced additional plans to create a Taskforce to tackle these issues and a foundation with over $1m already donated to create apprenticeships and job opportunities for under represented groups. We want to make lasting change and are acting to do this.”

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