April 16, 2024

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Luke Smith

Pique ‘definitely not racist’ but Hamilton’s comment ‘incorrect’

Pique – who is the father of Verstappen’s partner, Kelly Pique – used racial slurs to describe Hamilton in an interview last year, Its contents appeared this week.

It led to widespread condemnation from the F1 community over the past week as the majority of drivers and teams rallied around Hamilton, and also led to Piquet being banned from the track.

pique He issued a statement apologizing to HamiltonHowever, he denied the existence of any racist intent behind the word he used and opposed the translation.

Speaking about the matter for the first time on Thursday at Silverstone, Verstappen said it was not correct that Piquet used the term he used.

“I think the wording that was used, although of course with different kinds of cultures and things that they said when they were young and younger, just wasn’t correct,” Verstappen said.

“Let it be a lesson for the future not to use this word, because it is so offensive, and especially nowadays, it is gaining more traction.”

But Verstappen denied that Pique was racist, saying: “I’ve spent some time with Nelson, I think he’s more than the average person in general, and he’s definitely not racist.

“He’s actually a really nice and relaxed guy, and I’m sure the statement he made as well, I think you can see the word in two ways. But I think it’s still best not to use it.”

Three-time world champion Nelson Piquet

Verstappen said he had not spoken to Piquet about the matter, saying it was “not in my business” to discuss it with him.

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‘I’m not going to call him and go, man,’ said Verstappen, ‘that ain’t right – I think he knows it himself.’

“He had already said in his testimony, I think he realized he used the wrong word, who am I then to call him? I don’t think it would change anything anyway.

As he said, it can be interpreted in two ways, and of course people pick up on the bad side and it really gets magnified, because I know Nelson personally.

“People are of course calling him racist now, which I don’t think he is, but I totally agree that you can’t use those words.”

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Asked if he agreed with the circuit ban handed to Pique in light of the incident, Verstappen said he thought it was “better to open the conversation than to ban”.

“When you’re blocking people, you’re really not helping the situation, you’re not talking,” Verstappen said.

“You have to communicate. Communication is really important, because if you just block, you’re not going to help what you’re trying to enforce. You’re trying to educate people. So it’s better to have a conversation.

These things can be solved very easily. When you get into a fight with someone and you insult someone and you have a good conversation and you apologize, and those kinds of things, they are very similar. He’s not the kindest, the one you bother with, but things can be easily forgotten.

“As long as you learn from the mistake you made or the wording you used, I don’t think you should be banned from the ring, especially the three-time world champion.”

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