Lewis Hamilton resolute on activism: ‘I won’t give up using this platform’

Lewis Hamilton response
Mario Renzi - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images
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After reports surfaced Monday that his Breonna Taylor shirt had sparked an FIA inquiry, Lewis Hamilton had a response by reaffirming his commitment to raising awareness about social justice and anti-racism efforts.

On his Instagram story Tuesday morning, the six-time Formula One champion wrote, “Want you to know that I won’t stop, I won’t let up, I won’t give up on using this platform to shed light on what I believe is right.

“I want to thank those of you who continue to support me and show love, I am so grateful. But this is a journey for all of us to come together and challenge the world on every level of injustice, not only racial. We can help make this place for our kids and the future generations.”

His Mercedes-AMG team reposted a screenshot of Hamilton’s IG story on its Twitter feed Tuesday with a raised fist.

Hamilton, the only Black champion in F1 history, has been outspoken about the need for more diversity in F1, calling out drivers and teams for needing to do more against racism. He also has joined Black Lives Matter marches.

Mercedes has been supportive of Hamilton’s activism, redesigning its cars this year in all-black paint schemes as a stand against discrimination.

Mercedes principal Toto Wolff was quoted by the BBC as saying last weekend that Hamilton had the team’s full support to protest racism as he saw fit. “Whatever he does, we will support,” Wolff said.

Hamilton wore a shirt reading “Arrest The Cops Who Killed Breonna Taylor” before and after his victory Sunday at Mugello.

“It took me a long time to get that shirt,” Hamilton said afterward, according to The Associated Press. “I’ve been wanting to wear that and bring awareness to the fact that there’s people that have been killed on the street and there’s someone that got killed in her own house.”

Final 2023 Rolex 24 at Daytona results, stats

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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — The 2023 Rolex 24 at Daytona overall results were all streaks: two consecutive victories in the endurance classic for Meyer Shank Racing and three in a row for Acura.

And Helio Castroneves became the second driver to win three consecutive Rolex 24s and the first to win in three straight years (Peter Gregg won in 1973, ’75 and ’76; the race wasn’t held in ’74 because of a global oil crisis).

Starting from the pole position, Tom Blomqvist took the checkered flag in the No. 60 ARX-06 that led a race-high 365 of 783 laps with co-drivers Castroneves, Simon Pagenaud and Colin Braun.

RESULTS: Click here for the finishing order in the 61st Rolex 24 at Daytona l By class

Meyer Shank Racing now has two Rolex 24 victories and the 2022 championship since entering the premier prototype category of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship in 2021.

“I think what’s so special about this team is we are a small team compared to some of our opponents, but the atmosphere, the way we work, enables people to get the best out of themselves, and I think that’s why we’re such high achievers,” Blomqvist said. “I think there’s no egos. It’s a very open book, and that just enables each and every one of us to reach our potential. I think that’s why we’ve achieved so much success in really a short time at this level of competition.”

It’s the 16th IMSA victory for MSR.

The 61st running of the Rolex 24 at Daytona marked the debut of the Grand Touring Prototype category that brought hybrid engine technology to IMSA’s top level.

In other categories:

LMP2: James Allen passed Ben Hanley on the final lap and delivered a victory in the No. 55 ORECA by 0.016 seconds. It’s the second IMSA victory for Proton Competition, which last won at Sebring in 2012. It was the first Rolex 24 victory for Allen and co-drivers Gianmaria Bruni, Fred Poordad and Francesco Pizzi.

GTD Pro: Cooper MacNeil won in the last start of his IMSA career as the No. 79 Mercedes-AMG GT3 scored the first Rolex 24 at Daytona for WeatherTech Racing and the team’s fourth career victory.

MacNeil, who co-drove with Maro Engel, Jules Gounon and Daniel Juncadella, earned his 12th career victory and first at the Rolex 24.

“Winning by last IMSA race is tremendous,” MacNeil said.

GTD: The No. 27 Heart of Racing Team delivered the first Rolex 24 at Daytona for Aston Martin, which has been competing in endurance races at Daytona International Speedway since 1964. Drivers Marco Sorensen, Roman De Angelis, Darren Turner and Ian James (also the team principal) earned the victory in the English brand’s 13th attempt.

It’s also the first Rolex 24 at Daytona win for Heart of Racing, which has seven IMSA wins.

LMP3: Anthony Mantella, Wayne Boyd, Nico Varrone and Thomas Merrill drove the No. 17 AWA Duqueine D08 to victory by 12 laps for the team’s first class win in IMSA.


STATS PACKAGE FOR ROLEX 24 HOURS OF DAYTONA:

Fastest laps by driver

Fastest laps by driver after race (over the weekend)

Fastest laps by driver and class after race

Fastest lap sequence

Lap chart

Leader sequence

Race analysis by lap

Stint analysis

Time cards

Pit stop time cards

Best sector times

Race distance and speed average

Flag analysis

Weather report

NEXT: The 2023 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season will resume with the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring March 18 with coverage across NBC, USA and Peacock.