Lewis Hamilton has labelled Sir Jackie Stewart and F1 legend Mario Andretti as “ignorant” over a lack of support for his anti-racism campaign.
The British six-time world champion has been a vocal and prominent campaigner against racism since the death of American George Floyd in May,
He has since launched a commission to encourage more diversity in F1, in which he is the only black driver. F1 have set up their own We Race As One initiative.
But not all drivers have taken a knee before races and others have worn anti-racism T-shirt’s while others haven’t.
As the only black driver, Hamilton has vowed to speak to race chiefs to “do a better job” in spreading the message.
Hamilton’s calls have been questioned by Andretti, who labelled the Mercedes driver a “militant”.
American F1 and IndyCar hero Andretti, 80, said: “I have a lot of respect for Lewis, but why become a militant? He’s always been accepted and he’s earned everyone’s respect.
“I think the whole point of this is pretentious. I feel that way. And it’s creating a problem that doesn’t exist.”
Hamilton responded to the comments on social media, saying that he has always had respect for Andretti, who is famously an F1 and multi IndyCar champion, but called on the American to “educate himself”.
“This is disappointing but unfortunately a reality that some of the older generation who still have a voice today cannot get out of their own way and acknowledge there is a problem,” Hamilton wrote on an Instagram story.
“Again, this is plain ignorance but that will not stop me from continuing to push for change. It is never too late to learn and I hope that this man who I’ve always had respect for can take the time to educate himself.”
Stewart, meanwhile, denied there was a major racism issue in F1.
“I think Lewis has been a great example to lots of people,” the Scottish three-time F1 champion said on Good Morning Britain last week. “He’s quite vocal about these elements, I don’t think there’s as big a problem as there might seem.
“There is no resistance for change if someone is clever and good at what they do. They will be accepted in Formula 1.”
In his following Instagram post, Hamilton wrote: “Again, another one. Just disappointing.”