A racial slur allegedly used by Nelson Piquet towards Lewis Hamilton has been condemned in statements from Formula One and Mercedes, following significant backlash towards the former world champion.
Reports in Brazil have highlighted an interview conducted with Piquet following the 2021 British Grand Prix, where the 69-year-old allegedly used racist language when assessing the collision between Hamilton and Red Bull's Max Verstappen.
That collision was one of a number between the two title rivals last season and led Verstappen to retire from the race, with Hamilton going on to secure victory.
Footage alleges that Piquet used a racial slur towards seven-time world champion Hamilton, which has led both F1 and Mercedes to issue statements condemning the language – although both have faced social media backlash for not identifying Piquet.
The FIA strongly condemns any racist or discriminatory language and behaviour, which have no place in sport or wider society. We express our solidarity with @LewisHamilton and fully support his commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion in motor sport.— FIA (@fia) June 28, 2022
The statement from F1 read: "Discriminatory or racist language is unacceptable in any form and has no part in society. Lewis is an incredible ambassador for our sport and deserves respect."
"His tireless efforts to increase diversity and inclusion are a lesson to many and something we are committed to at F1."
Mercedes stated: "We condemn in the strongest terms any use of racist or discriminatory language of any kind.
"Lewis has spearheaded our sport’s efforts to combat racism, and he is a true champion of diversity on and off track.
"Together, we share a vision for a diverse and inclusive motorsport, and this incident underlines the fundamental importance of continuing to strive for a brighter future."
Hamilton subsequently tweeted: "Vamos focar em mudar a mentalidade", which translated to English from Portuguese, reads: "Let's focus on changing the mindset."