Lewis Hamilton has announced the findings of the commission he created to investigate how to improve diversity in motorsport, citing “far-reaching” problems that need to be addressed.
The world champion has made a strong personal commitment to countering racial inequality and wanted to find ways to improve the racial mix across racing, which is still a predominantly white, male sport.
He established the Hamilton Commission last year in partnership with the Royal Academy of Engineering to research why so few BAME people were entering motorsport and having identified the barriers, draw up plans for what could be done to ensure the sport has a more diverse make up.
The report, which will be published on Tuesday, is titled: “Accelerating change: improving representation of black people in UK motorsport”. It identifies several key areas to be addressed with the ambition of making a long-term change.
These include calling for F1 teams to adopt a diversity and inclusion charter; for teams and motor racing businesses to expand apprenticeships and the establishment of scholarship programmes to help black students progress into motorsport.
The report also emphasises addressing a wider perspective beyond racing, including a fund to address the factors that contribute to a high proportion of black students being excluded from school; new approaches to increase the number of black teachers in STEM subjects and the creation of supplementary schooling led by black community groups to promote STEM activity.
“Through the Commission’s research, we can see there are clear meaningful steps the motorsport industry needs to take towards creating a more inclusive environment where diversity can thrive,” said Hamilton. “But also we must tackle the barriers facing black students that exist throughout their educational journey.
“Our findings have opened my eyes to just how far-reaching these problems are. Now that I’m armed with the Commission’s recommendations, I am personally committed to ensuring they are put into action.”
Hamilton will be attempting to carry out the recommendations through his own endeavour, including making a financial commitment, as well as working with his Mercedes team, F1, the motorsport industry, charities and other organisations.
Hamilton will continue the defence of his world championship title at the British Grand Prix this weekend.
Meanwhile, the McLaren driver Lando Norris was left “shaken” after his watch was stolen following the Euro 2020 final at Wembley. The 21-year-old was unharmed in the incident which occurred after he had watched England’s penalty shootout defeat to Italy on Sunday night.
A statement from the F1 team read: “McLaren Racing can confirm that Lando Norris was involved in an incident, after the Euro 2020 final match at Wembley, during which the watch he was wearing was taken. Thankfully, Lando was unharmed but he is understandably shaken.”