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Hamilton | Taking the knee 'sp...
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Hamilton | Taking the knee 'sparks uncomfortable conversation'

Stephen Doyle
Stephen Doyle

19:11 25 Mar 2021

Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton will continue to take the knee in the hope it will 'spark conversations' about the issue of racism.

Recently some football teams in the UK have decided not to take the knee anymore before games while the gesture, in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, was dubbed 'degrading' by Crystal Palace winger Wilfred Zaha who said, "I feel like we should stand tall".

Hamilton disagrees and speaking ahead of the new F1 season which gets underway in Bahrain this weekend, he explained why he believes that sports stars taking the knee can help the fight against racism.

"We have an amazing platform here. I think it's great to see the steps that Formula 1 are taking, the steps that Mercedes are taking, to make this sport more diverse," said Hamilton.

"And I plan to continue to take the knee because what's really important is when young children are watching what we are doing in this sport and when they see us take the knee, they will sit and ask their parents or their teachers 'why are they doing that? What are they taking the knee for?'

"And it sparks an uncomfortable conversation.

"It means parents have to educate themselves and the kids are getting educated. So it's a fight that's not won, it's a fight that will continue on for a long time, I'm sure. But we are in a good time where conversation is healthy."

Meanwhile, Hamilton has emphasised that he doesn't want to retire from F1 at the end of the year.

The seven-time world champion has only signed a one-year contract extension with Mercedes which prompted rumours of his exit from the sport.

He said that "he doesn't feel like he's at the end", ahead of this weekend's opening race of the 2021 season.

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