On Sunday (July 5), Formula One’s drivers took a knee as a sign of protest prior to their first race of the season.
In the video posted to social media, the drivers were captured rocking shirts that had “End Racism” and “Black Lives Matter” on them. “End Racism. One cause. One commitment,” Formula One tweeted on Sunday (July 5) alongside a video of the moment. “As individuals, we choose our own way to support the cause. As a group of drivers and a wider F1 family, we are united in its goal.”
Of the 20 drivers that took a knee, six did not, including Charles Leclerc. He explained that although he did not follow the same actions as some of his associates, he doesn’t tolerate racism. “I believe that what matters are facts and behaviors in our daily life rather than formal gestures that could be seen as controversial in some countries,” Leclerc tweeted before the race. “I will not take the knee but this does not mean at all that I am less committed than others in the fight against racism.”
Lewis Hamilton, who finished fourth in the season’s opener, has spoken out against racism on several occasions following the death of George Floyd. Earlier this week, the six-time champion explained that he wants his team to speak out against racial injustices happening in America.
“There are a lot of people that just take a moment to post Blackout Tuesday [on social networks], but they’re not really doing much,” he said on Thursday (July 2). “I’ve definitely not heard anything from any of the other teams, as far as I’m aware. I won’t stop pushing until we really see change. Seeing one person of color added to the paddock is not diversity, so we’ve really got to dig deep.”
Take a look at the viral moment below.