Toto Wolff questions Niels Wittich over jewellery clampdown

© LAT Images for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd

After F1 race director Niels Wittich decided to enforce FIA’s jewellery ban, Toto Wolff rhetorically asked if this is “a battle he needs to have at this stage”.

Ahead of the Australian Grand Prix weekend, FIA race director Niels Wittich reminded Formula 1 drivers that they are not allowed to wear jewellery while driving their cars during on-track sessions.

Some observers, including Sky Sports F1’s Ted Kravitz, have said they believe this clampdown is targeting Lewis Hamilton directly, as he is the only F1 driver who regularly wears nose and ear piercings.

While Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff is very complimentary of the new race director, he questions his decision to enforce this particular rule.

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“How he has run the first few races has been respectful, solid and he hasn’t put a single foot wrong,” the Austrian said.

“But is [the jewellery ban] a battle he needs to have at this stage?

“However, if it turns out to be the biggest unfortunate misstep of a race director, I would take it a thousand times over,” concluded Wolff.

In response to the jewellery clampdown, Hamilton already said he doesn’t have “any plans of removing” his piercings, because some of them are “literally welded in”.

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