Auto Culture

Hamilton Dons Jewelry At 2022 Miami Grand Prix In Response To FIA

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Seven-time Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton has called out the Formula 1 governing body FiA’s ban on drivers wearing jewelry – labeling it “a step backwards” and “very silly” – six months after the FiA’s fiasco at the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix prevented Hamilton from winning his eighth F1 world title.

Yet, despite that glaring assortment of bungling being only months old, the FiA continues to shoot itself in the foot at the 2022 Miami Grand Prix, with newly-appointed race director Niels Wittich reminding drivers of the jewelry ban specified under the FiA’s International Sporting Code.

Specifically in Miami, Wittich clarified the ban for supposed safety reasons but did so without providing examples of occasions in the past when jewelry has hindered medical personnel from accessing a driver or extracting him from a car.

Without examples of hindrance, the FiA’s ban lacks supporting merit and the seven-time F1 world champion Hamilton made a point in Friday morning’s news conference of wearing as much jewelry as he possibly could including several necklaces, rings on every finger and three watches, each set to a different time zone.

Hamilton wore a new Swiss-made International Watch Company-Schaffhausen Pilot’s Watch Chronograph 41 Edition “Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team” [$7,850] made specifically for the Mercedes F1 team with IWC-Schaffhausen serving as the team’s official engineering partner. The watch was made with a lightweight, grade five titanium case – which has the highest strength-to-density ratio of any metal and is highly corrosion-resistant – and is capable of up to 46 hours of power reserve. The watch is in the team’s signature Petronas green color and comes with two straps: one made from embossed black calfskin, the other made from rubber tinted in green.

“I couldn’t get any more jewelry on today,” joked Hamilton, who also has two body piercings. “It’s never been a safety issue in the past. If [the FiA] stop me [from driving in the 2022 Miami Grand Prix], then so be it. We’ve got a spare driver so we’re all ready and prepped for the weekend. There’s lots to do in the city anyway! It’ll be good either way.”

Hamilton indicates that he is willing to sign a waiver to take responsibility away from the FiA.

“I’ve been in the sport for 16 years and I’ve been wearing jewelry for 16 years. In the car I only ever have my earrings on and my nose ring, of which I can’t even remove. It seems unnecessary for us to get into this spat.”

AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly supported Hamilton’s perspective and indicated that he would not feel comfortable racing without a religious-themed item of jewelry he races with.

“I have a religious item that I wear with me when I’m racing which is important to me. I don’t feel comfortable not having that in the car. I do feel like its personal, we should have the freedom to do what we feel is right for us, said Gasly. “At the end of the day we have the responsibility to go out there and put our lives at risk. It should be a personal choice.”

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