Mercedes back Hamilton amid India controversy

Friday, 16 november 2018, 06:13 , by Matthew Scott

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has leaped to the defence of Lewis Hamilton after the Formula 1 champion faced an online backlash over comments made regarding visiting India for three grands prix between 2011-2013. Hamilton spoke of being conflicted while competing at the Buddh International Circuit, owing to poverty seen in the surrounding area.

The five-time world champion suggested that he would be in favour of Liberty Media introducing more races in motorsport's European and American heartlands, on the back of an announcement that a Vietnam GP will join the calendar in 2020.

While describing previous races in new countries, Hamilton told BBC Sport: "I've been to India before to a race which was strange because India was such a poor place yet we had this massive, beautiful grand prix track made in the middle of nowhere. I felt very conflicted when I went to that grand prix."

Hamilton made his own explanation of his comments on social media and Wolff issued a statement via Mercedes' Twitter account to back his man.

F1 raced in India three times – Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull winning each time before it was dropped following a tax dispute with local authorities.

MORE: Hamilton clarifies India comments after backlash
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Comments (12)

  • Francis Williams III
    I don't get how could people could misconstrue what he said. When I read it the first time, it just sounded like he was calling out the fact that people are living in poverty and instead of coming to their aid, the government decided to sink millions of dollars into that track and having the right to hold an F1 event.
  • Michael Wolf
    There is absolutely nothing wrong with what Lewis and Toto say. I should know- I have been living and working in India for several years. It is conflicting. Nevertheless India is a great country with the most welcoming people I have ever met in my life. Nothing wrong with Lewis' and Toto's statements though.
  • Nihal Anand Shettigar
    I'm not a fan of Mercedes or Hamilton but what Lewis spoke about India is true and I understand where he's coming from some people of my country will call me anti national for this now
  • Pedro Bustos
    Maybe he she do some travelling to some of the poorer parts of the world, might open his eyes a little to how the majority of the people live on our planet earth..
  • Steven Miller
    There was zero wrong with a single word Lewis said, it merely proves that the mindless hate against him is horribly, pathetically real.
  • Robert DeCastro
    Not a Lewis fan..but nothing he said was incorrect. Only the Bollywood oLigarch are offended.
  • Glenn Taylor
    he didnt say any wrong at all...In todays world you cant say anything. Its a joke
  • Pavan Kadam
    Person without elementary education says shit and ppl celebrate over his poop.
  • Shyam Madan
    He just spoke his mind ! Nothing wrong in what he said
  • Laxmi Narayan Verma
    You are always right
  • Tony Bowler
    Of course they do.

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