Former Formula 1 driver Nelson Piquet made not only racist but also homophobic remarks towards seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton in an interview from November 2021, including a new excerpt was unveiled in the Brazilian press.
Three black deputies from the left-wing PSOL party also revealed to AFP on Saturday that they had filed a complaint with the Brasilia public prosecutor's office, demanding legal proceedings against the ex-Brazilian pilot.
According to a first extract interview at Motorsports.com, which resurfaced on the internet on Tuesday, the three-time world champion (1981, 1983, 1987) used the word “little black” (“neguinho” in Brazilian) to talk about Hamilton in looking back at an accident involving Briton and Dutchman Max Verstappen on the first lap of the 2021 British Grand Prix.
In another extract, revealed on Friday by the specialized site Grandepremio.com, Nelson Piquet uses the same term again, but also makes homophobic remarks towards Hamilton, to talk about his rivalry with the German pilot Nico Rosberg, when they were all two members of the Mercedes team.
He also insults Nico's father, Keke Rosberg, against whom he raced in the 80s, and whom he describes as “shit”. Before launching into a racist, sexual and homophobic comment again targeting Hamilton.
On Wednesday, Nelson Piquet, enthusiastic supporter of far-right president Jair Bolsonaro, had “apologized for everything heart” with the British pilot, but had relativized his racist remarks, considering that they had been “mistranslated” by certain international media.
Tuesday, Hamilton had reacted: “These are more than words. These archaic mentalities must change and have no place in our sport.”
Piquet's remarks had also been widely condemned in the world of F1, by the International Automobile Federation (FIA), by Formula 1, the organizer of the World Championship, and by teams and other drivers.
In the complaint filed with the prosecution, the left-wing deputies suggest in particular that ex-Brazilian pilot be ordered to pay compensation for “collective moral prejudice” and that the sum be “donated to organizations that fight racial discrimination”.