Formula One racer with LGBTQ pride T-shirt
Sebastian Vettel (DEU #5), Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One Team with a special t-shirt on the grid, 01 Aug 2021. (Action Press/Shutterstock)

Formula One Racers Stir Up International Controversy Over T-Shirts Supporting LGBTQ Rights

LGBTQ allies — and Formula One racing champions — Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel have come under fire for their recent support of diversity and inclusion within the sport.

Alex Cooper of The Advocate reported that German racer Vettel was recently reprimanded by Formula One officials for not removing a T-shirt that supported LGBTQ rights before the start of the Hungarian Grand Prix in Budapest last weekend.

“The four-time world champion driver wore a rainbow-colored T-shirt on Sunday that read ‘Same Love,’” Cooper reported. “Drivers Valtteri Bottas, Carlos Sainz and Vettel’s teammate Lance Stroll were [also] reprimanded for not removing their T-shirts that read ‘We Race As One.’”

That T-shirt comes from a program of the same name that began last year in the racing league to promote and support “diversity, inclusivity and sustainability.”

While Vettel is a staunch supporter of LGBTQ rights and has been especially outspoken about an incredibly discriminatory and harmful new Hungarian law banning representations of LGBTQ individuals from minors, he said his actions that day were more mundane: because of a rainstorm, he claimed that he and the other racers simply “forgot” to take off the messaged shirts as the race got started.

Whether that’s true or not — Vettel was also spotted wearing shoes with a large rainbow stripe just days earlier — one of the biggest names in Formula One racing, Lewis Hamilton from the U.K., quickly came to his support.

“Super proud of this guy,” Hamilton wrote in a now-deleted Instagram post. “There is no rule that says what color shirt you can wear, and supporting the LGBTQ+ community is not reprimandable. This is BS. Well done, Seb. I’ll join you next time with the same shirt.”

In a subsequent post, Hamilton also wrote: “Love to see this Seb supporting the LGBTQ+ community. Love always wins.”


Related: For more recent diversity and inclusion news, click here.

Latest News

Walmart interior

Black Corrections Officer Wrongly Accused of Shoplifting in Walmart Claims Store Employees Racially Profiled Him 

Despite Walmart’s ongoing commitment to diversity as an organization, employees at one store in Georgia have been accused of racially profiling one of their customers. Monique Beals of The Hill reported that “David Conners, a Clayton County corrections officer, was stopped and handcuffed by a Fayetteville police officer while he…

Walgreens exterior

Walgreens Planning Virtual Summit To Promote Supplier Diversity

National pharmaceutical giant Walgreens (No. 39 on the DiversityInc Top 50 list) has announced an upcoming supplier diversity summit designed to help the country’s numerous diverse businesses and entrepreneurs promote their businesses and offerings.  Business news site Retail Info Systems (RIS) reported that the virtual event, scheduled for April 5th…

Shane Brown

Las Vegas Police Sued for Jailing Black Man Using an Arrest Warrant Meant for a White Man With a Similar Name

In a case combining mistaken identity, incredibly poor judgment and racial profiling, Las Vegas police are accused of “confusing” a 23-year-old Black man for a white man twice his age simply because they share a similar name. And now that wrongfully detained man is filing suit against the police department…

Olivia Munn

AAPI Forum With Actress Olivia Munn To Discuss Anti-Asian Discrimination Hit with Racist ‘Zoom Bomb’

An online gathering of Asian American women and their allies to talk about anti-Asian discrimination felt the damage firsthand when a racist internet troll attacked their meeting. Leah Asmelash of CNN reported that the “virtual gathering of high-profile Asian American creators, including actress Olivia Munn, became the subject of their…