Lewis Hamilton at 2020 Belgian Grand Prix via ThatOneFormula YouTube

Formula 1 updated their rule book by banning political and religious statements or comments after two years of promoting Black Lives Matter and other left wing causes.

Formula 1 Starting Grid at 2022 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix via Formula 1 YouTube

The Federation Internationale de L’Automobile (FIA) added the ban as part of their 2023 International Sporting Code.

12.2.1.n states “The general making and display of political, religious and personal statements or comments notably in violation of the general principle of neutrality promoted by the FIA under its Statues, unless previously approved in writing by the FIA for International Competitions, or by the relevant ASN for National Competitions within their jurisdiction.”

12.2.1.o also states, “Failure to comply with the instructions of the FIA regarding the appointment and participation of persons during official ceremonies at any Competition counting  towards a FIA Championship.”

Lewis Hamilton via Formula 1 YouTube

Formula 1 previously banned political or religious messages as part of the cars’ advertising.

10.6.2 states, “Competitors taking part in International Competitions are not allowed to affix to their Automobiles advertising that is political or religious in nature or that is prejudicial to the interests of the FIA.”

Lewis Hamilton at 2018 German Grand Prix via Formula 1 YouTube

This ban comes in the wake of Black Lives Matter activism on behalf of Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel, and Mick Schumacher.

Hamilton, a British driver and seven-time Formula 1 champion who holds the record for most wins, infamously wore a shirt that read “Arrest the cops who killed Breonna Taylor” after he won the Tuscan Grand Prix in Mugello, Italy back in 2020.

Lewis Hamilton via Muhammad Haykhal YouTube

Throughout much of 2020, Hamilton would also wear Black Lives Matter shirts and kneel.

In an Instagram post from July 2020, where Hamilton shared a picture of him wearing a Black Lives Matter shirt and kneeling he claims he wasn’t making a political statement, but said he was fighting for equality.

Hamilton wrote, “I may get criticism in the media and elsewhere, but this fight is about equality, not politics or promotion. To me it was an emotional and poignant chapter in the progress of making F1 a more diverse and inclusive sport.”

Lewis Hamilton Instagram

In another post in November, Hamilton’s claim that he wasn’t making a political was clearly exposed as an utter lie as he wore a shirt spewing all kinds of left-wing American political rhetoric.

It read, “Black Lives Matter, Women’s rights are human rights, immigration is a good thing, science real, and love is love.”

He captioned the photo writing, “As we continue through the year I can definitely feel the slowing in momentum of BLM. I won’t stop trying to push for change. Awareness is where that starts so you’ll see me there each weekend representing.”

Lewis Hamilton Instagram

Vettel, a German racer and four-time champion, showed his support for the Black Lives Matter movement and left wing American politics back in 2020 as well.

He added #BlackLivesMatter to his helmet during the race at the Austrian Grand Prix.

sebvettelnews Twitter

Before the season opening race at the Austrian Grand Prix in 2020, all of the Formula 1 drivers wore Black Lives Matter and End Racism shirts. However, six drivers chose not to kneel alongside Hamilton.

Those six drivers were Charles Leclerc, Max Verstappen, Daniil Kvyat, Carlos Sainz, Antonio Giovinazzi, and Kimi Raikkonen. Hamilton shared photos of the drivers kneeling to his Instagram.

 

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A post shared by Lewis Hamilton (@lewishamilton)

At the beginning of the 2021 Formula 1 season all of the drivers took part in Formula 1’s “We Race As One” ESG campaign. However, only Vettel, Lance Stroll, Lando Norris, Daniel Ricciardo, Nicholas Latifi, George Russell, Pierre Gasly, Schumacher, Sergio Perez, and Hamilton kneeled.

At the Bahrain Grand Prix in 2021 Sebastian Vettel and Mick Schumacher also wore the “Black Lives Matter, Women’s rights are human rights, immigration is a good thing, science real, and love is love” shirt.

gabriellcozzta Twitter

Not only does this new rule come after Formula 1 pushed drivers to promote Black Lives Matter and other left wing political issues through their “We Race As One” campaign, but Formula 1 boss and President of FIA Mohammed Ben Sulayem heavily criticized the organization for putting politics above the sport.

Speaking with GrandPrix247 back in June, Sulayem was asked about what the sport should not become. He answered, “Niki Lauda and Alain Prost only cared about driving. Now, Vettel drives a rainbow bicycle, Lewis is passionate about human rights and Norris addresses mental health. Everybody has the right to think. To me, it is about deciding whether we should impose our believes in something over the sport all the time.”

He continued, “I am from an Arabian culture. I am international and Muslim. I do not impose my believes on other people? No way! Never. If you look at my operation in the UAE: 16 nationalities! Name me one federation that has that many nationalities.”

“On top, there are over 34% women and 7 religions. And even more Christians than Muslims. I am proud because it creates credibility and merit. But do I go and pose my beliefs? No. The rules are there, even now there are issues when it comes to – for example- jewellery, I didn’t write that,” he concluded.

Mohammed Ben Sulayem via FIA YouTube

What do you make of this new rule change? Do you think other sports should follow suit?

NEXT: Formula 1 Cancels 2023 Chinese Grand Prix “Due To The Ongoing Difficulties Presented By The COVID-19 Situation”

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