Sebastian Vettel has been reprimanded by the FIA for failing to remove his pride colours t-shirt during the pre-race playing of the Hungarian national anthem.
During the pre-race ceremony Vettel showed his support for the LGBTQ+ community by wearing the pride colours t-shirt. However, he failed to remove it before the playing of the Hungarian national anthem, which is against Formula 1’s guidelines.
The FIA allows drivers who pledge their support for F1’s “We Race As One” campaign to wear a “GPDA issued WRAO t-shirt or any attire conveying a message in support of the WeRaceAsOne values”.
However, during the playing of the national anthem, the drivers are required to “remove their t-shirts and move to their name card position for the National Anthem, wearing their race suits”.
However, in Hungary Vettel, Lance Stroll, Carlos Sainz and Valtteri Bottas didn’t remove their shirts when the national anthem started playing, so they were summoned to the stewards after the race.
All four drivers were later reprimanded by the stewards, and the ruling for each driver said: “The driver explained that he forgot to take off the WRAO t-shirt in time during the national anthem because of the onset of rain”.
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The same wording was also used in the case of Sebastian Vettel, even though he didn’t wear the allowed “We Race As One” t-shirt, but a custom pride colours one. Furthermore, after learning that he could be summoned to the stewards, he doubled down on his decision to wear it.
“I heard it’s because I left my shirt on for the national anthem,” Vettel told Sky Sports F1.
“I’m happy if they disqualify me. They can do whatever they want to me, I don’t care.
“I would do it again,” concluded the German.
In the post Hungarian Grand Prix press conference, Lewis Hamilton expressed his support for Vettel.
“I think it’s wonderful that Seb has taken a stance this weekend, really to speak out for those in the LBGTQ+ community here,” the Briton said.
“I spoke at the beginning of the weekend and I think it was important for him to do so, so I don’t think he… he probably won’t be in too much trouble but we have to make a stance.
“We are pushing diversity and inclusivity and that community 100 per cent includes that… is included in that.
“I’m proud of him for it,” concluded the seven-time champion.