There has been a lot of emphasis on rules and regulations this season with FIA’s changed management. One such safety rule prohibiting drivers from wearing jewelry while racing is at odds with Lewis Hamilton’s beliefs. The particular rule about the drivers’ safety has been in Formula One for a long time. However, it has been strictly enforced this year under new F1 race director Niels Wittich and FIA president Mohammad ben Sulayem.
On Friday, during the Miami GP press conference, race director Wittich raised a few concerns in his note about the jewelry and drivers wearing normal underwear beneath their approved flameproof underwear. The note explained metallic objects like jewelry in skin contact could reduce heat transmission protection. Hence, it increased the risk of burn injuries in the event of a fire. The key note included more concerns and how they could affect the drivers’ safety in adverse situations. Unfortunately, Lewis Hamilton commented during the press conference that he was ready to miss a race if the FIA kept forcing drivers with their demands.
Hamilton Threatens To Miss A Race If The FIA Kept Insisting About Jewelry Rule
In his Miami notes, F1 race director Niels Wittich mentioned that jewelry reduces the protection afforded by drivers’ racewear. It increases the risk of burn injuries and could hinder medical interventions. Hamilton stated during the press conference that the rule was a backward step in the sport. He feels that there are more important issues and causes that F1 racing members need to focus on. The seven-time world champ added that he had been racing for sixteen years. And that is as long as he has been wearing jewelry.
Further, Lewis Hamilton pointed out that his jewelry has never been a safety issue in the past, and if the FIA stops him, so be it. Hamilton said, “We’ve got spare drivers who are ready and prepped for the weekend. There’s a lot to do in the city anyway so I’m good wither way.”
Hamilton Messaged FIA President And Agreed To Remove Earrings
The former world champ was willing to avoid unnecessary spat with the FIA. Later on Friday, Hamilton revealed that he messaged FIA president Mohammed ben Sulayem regarding the jewelry rule. The Briton reassured the president that he wanted to be an ally and had no intentions of starting a fight with the FIA. Lewis shared that his concern is about his individuality and being who he is. The British racer feels that there are bigger things to do and focus on making an impact where it really matters.
The 37-year-old agreed to sign a waiver that would allow him to continue wearing jewelry in the car. It could take the safety responsibility away from the FIA. But Lewis Hamilton chose to back down and remove jewelry while racing for now. Also, he received a two-race exemption from the FIA to get his nose stud removed. The stud is wielded on and needs to be removed surgically.
There will be a further discussion between the drivers, teams, and the FIA to determine if some amendments need to be made in the ruling. Maybe the FIA could be willing to accept jewelry if the drivers prove that jewelry is safe to wear inside the car. Meanwhile, AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly backed Hamilton. The French racing driver said that he wore religious items inside the cockpit during the race. It is important to him, and he does not feel comfortable driving the car without it. Hopefully, the driver led by Hamilton and the FIA will reach an understanding regarding a silly issue giving way to an unnecessary brawl.