F1 condemns former boss Bernie Ecclestone's comments about racism
Formula 1 responds to remarks Ecclestone made in interview; F1 says the former CEO's honorary title expired in January 2020
Last Updated: 27/06/20 12:04pm
Formula 1 have said they "completely disagree" with comments made by the sport's former chief executive Bernie Ecclestone about racism.
Distancing the sport from remarks the 89-year-old Ecclestone made in an interview with CNN, Formula 1 said in a statement: "At a time when unity is needed to tackle racism and inequality, we completely disagree with Bernie Ecclestone's comments that have no place in Formula 1 or society.
"Mr Ecclestone has played no role in Formula 1 since he left our organisation in 2017, his title Chairman Emeritus, being honorific expired, in January 2020."
On Thursday, F1 launched a foundation and Task Force to improve equality and inclusion in motorsport as part of its new We Race As One initiative.
Lewis Hamilton, F1's six-time world champion, has also announced he is setting up The Hamilton Commission aimed at improving diversity in the motorsport industry.
In an Instagram Story post on Friday night, Hamilton said that it was "so sad and disappointing" to read Ecclestone's remarks.
"Bernie is out of the sport and a different generation but this is exactly what is wrong - ignorant and uneducated comments which show us how far we as a society need to go before real equality can happen," wrote Hamilton.
"It makes complete sense to me now that nothing was said or done to make our sport more diverse or to address the racial abuse I received throughout my career. If someone who has run the sport for decades has such a lack of understanding of the deep routed issues we as black people deal with every day, how can we expect all the people who work under him to understand. It starts at the top."
Hamilton has been a powerful voice in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and promised that "I will not stop pushing to create an inclusive future for our sport with equal opportunity for all. To create a world that provides equal opportunity for minorities."