Ahead of the Miami Grand Prix the FIA announced that checking of jewellery has been included into each team’s scrutineering submission ahead of races.
Considering how Lewis Hamilton is possibly the only driver known to wear nose and ear piercings, some have speculated that the ‘reminder’ was aimed at him directly.
Subsequently Hamilton said he was prepared to miss a race if he is not allowed to wear some of his piercings.
Thankfully this wasn’t necessary as the FIA has given him an exemption from this rule for the Miami and Spanish Grands Prix weekends, however he has to remove the jewellery by the Monaco Grand Prix (May 27-29).
At the Miami Grand Prix Friday press conference several drivers were asked if they were sympathetic with Lewis’s position regarding this issue. Here is what they had to say:
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“I do believe there are bigger, bigger things to focus on. And I appreciate FIA are looking after our safety. That’s also their priority and our priority. My personal case, I have also religious item that I wear with me, when I’m racing, which are important to me, which I don’t feel comfortable not having was me driving the car. And I do feel it’s a little bit personal. We should have the freedom to do what feels right for us. At the end of the day, we have the responsibility to go out there put our life at risk. And I do feel it should be a personal choice, but I respect the FIA and their will to always improve the safety. But I’ll appreciate a talk with them, to see if we can find a better solution than such a strict decisions as they made. So we’ll see what we can do.”
“I think Pierre sums it up well. There’s not really much to add to that. I still agree with Lewis’s comments, I understand. It’s our bodies at the same time as well. Like everything when you’re older, you’re prepared to have those consequences if, you want to do what you want to do, then so be it. You have a freedom for yourself. So yeah, that’s all.”
“I fully agree with Pierre and Alex in this case is good, from the FIA point of view to look after our safety because at the end of the day, it’s for us. But as Lewis said, he’s been in this sport for so many years, and he’s been doing it, and he already has them with him, so it’s, it’s not like that easy to remove them. So I think it would be good to find a compromise, to work together with them. And, and yeah, just make sure that we are all in the same line and not against each other. And I think that will be the important thing.”
“Nothing more to add, really. I think it’s great that the FIA is looking out for our safety but little things like a little piece of jewellery and stuff, I think it’s our own responsibility, as well to just accept the risk of something happening, wearing a bracelet or ring or whatever that might be. I get the big picture. But, I think there’s other things to focus on. Definitely bigger fish to fry.”