Seven-time world champion, Lewis Hamilton was on Sunday targeted by racist abuse online after winning the British Grand Prix.
The British rider who is contracted to Mercedes was sent monkey and gorilla emojis following the first lap crash with world championship leader Max Verstappen on Sunday at Silverstone.
The 36-year-old was given a ten-second-time penalty following a crash with Max Verstappen on the first lap which led to the latter being taken to the hospital for precautionary checks. After being clipped by Hamilton Verstappen hurtled into the tyre wall at 140mph in a rough incident.
Hamilton had since then tendered his apology to the 23-year-old.
“Today is a reminder of the dangers we face in this sport and we should never take lightly the risks. I send my best wishes to Max who is an incredible competitor and I’m glad to hear he is ok. I will always race hard but always fairly.
“I’m so proud of what we achieved today through teamwork. My team showed grit, perseverance, and commitment to this incredible sport. It’s a dream to win in front of my home crowd. This is for you. Never give up, keep rising, keep fighting,” he wrote on his Instagram page.
Unperturbed by the incident, Hamilton went on to secure victory at the British Grand Prix for the eighth time, overtaking Charles Leclerc in the closing stages. Since then, Hamilton received messages on Instagram from his Sunday evening upload that included monkey emojis.
One user wrote: ‘I was his fan before this race! very bad… Sir Lewis Hamilton’ before adding a gorilla emoji, while another message used monkey emojis.
The latest abuse is coming after England internationals Bukayo Saka, Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford received racist abuse online after missing penalties in the Euro 2020 final against Italy.
Hamilton had earlier this year won the first Laureus Athlete Advocate of the Year award due to his involvement in the fight against racism. The 36-year-old has frequently spoken about fighting racism and has pushed for increased diversity in Formula One.
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