(Reuters) – Formula One fans who purpose racist, sexist and homophobic abuse at others needs to be banned for life, four-times world champion Sebastian Vettel stated after reported incidents at Sunday’s Austrian Grand Prix.
The sport condemned the behaviour on the Red Bull Ring, the place a lot of the crowd was supporting Red Bull’s world champion Max Verstappen and campsites are stuffed with the Dutch driver’s ‘Orange Army’.
Mercedes’ seven-times world champion Lewis Hamilton, Formula One’s solely Black driver, stated he was ‘disgusted and disenchanted’.
“Whoever these individuals are, they need to be ashamed of themselves and they need to be banned from racing occasions for their lives,” Aston Martin driver Vettel instructed reporters.
“I believe there needs to be zero tolerance.”
Mercedes workforce boss Toto Wolff, an Austrian, stated the abuse needed to cease and the culprits handled however the crowd shouldn’t be condemned as an entire.
He stated actual fans of no matter workforce or driver couldn’t be racist, sexist or homophobic as a result of in any other case “you do not match Formula One and we do not need you.
“On the opposite facet, simply because there’s a couple of drunk, dumb-asses on the market that have not comprehended how the world goes immediately, we should not condemn the 99.9% of the fans that come right here.
“There are all the time going to be these idiots round,” he added when requested whether or not Formula One had turn into extra ‘tribal’.
“The sport polarises and triggers feelings. We need that… Just a few amoebas, folks with one (mind) cell, let’s not make it a normal factor.
“We simply want to focus on these guys and decide them out.”
Mercedes stated they invited one Czech fan, who wrote on social media how she was harassed by drunken male spectators who lifted her gown and stated she deserved no respect as a Hamilton supporter, to look at the race of their storage.
(Reporting by Alan Baldwin, modifying by Christian Radnedge)