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Formula 1 star Charles Leclerc responds to ‘racist’ allegations on not taking a knee

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Charles Leclerc has recently become a hot topic in the world of Motorsports. The Ferrari driver did not take a knee alongside the other drivers before the races of the ongoing F1 season, and was accused for being racist. Now, the Monégasque has responded to the claims, saying that the criticisms towards him have been unjust.

Charles Leclerc
Image Courtesy: Ferrari/XPB

Since the George Floyd incident back in May, world sports have been actively speaking up against racism, and have shown solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement all over the world. The ‘taking a knee’ gesture has become a norm for a number of sports, including Formula One, where the legendary Lewis Hamilton decided to perform it during the pre-race anti-racism demonstration all the four GPs of the ongoing season.

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ALSO READ: F1 boss Jean Todt “admires” and “respects” Lewis Hamilton for promoting his stance on anti-racism

While any fellow racer was free to join Hamilton to perform the gesture, Charles Leclerc was not seen taking the knee before the races, and subsequently, has been a subject of reprimand from the netizens, who have accused him for being racist.

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Formula 1 star Charles Leclerc responds to 'racist' allegations on not taking a knee - THE SPORTS ROOM
Lewis Hamilton and fellow drivers kneeling before the Brisish GP, while the others stand behind. (Image Courtesy: AFP)

Racism is disgusting: Charles Leclerc answers to accusations

Through a number of tweets on Thursday, Charles Leclerc has made his stance on racism clear, and also said that he has been victimised by wrong manipulation of his words and usage his image for detrimental purposes.

“It is very sad to see how some people manipulate my words to make headlines making me sound like a racist. I am not racist and I absolutely hate racism. Racism is disgusting,” Leclerc tweeted yesterday.

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“Stop putting me in the same group as these disgusting people that are discriminating others because of their skin colour, religion or gender,” the 22 year old went on, “I’m not part of them and I never will. I’ve always been respectful to everyone and that should be the standard in today’s world.” 

“And to whoever is using my image to promote their wrong ideas, please stop. I’m not into politics and I don’t want to be involved in that,” the chauffeur added.

He also said during a recent press conference that the decision “I just don’t want to be judged any more,”

Charles Leclerc was among the seven drivers who did not take the knee before the British Grand Prix, which also include Haas F1 Team’s driver Kevin Magnussen. On questioning his motives, the Dane said that he “wants to make sure that I’m with the messaging of ending racism.”

“I support that movement, and not any sort of political organisation that I think the Black Lives Matter movement is,” Kevin Magnussen said in a press conference.

“I kind of just want to separate myself from that, and then push on with ending racism and that messaging, which I think is great that Formula 1 is doing and that all of the drivers are supporting,” he added.

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Saikat Banerjee
Saikat Banerjee
A wordsmith who indulges in the world of combat sports, Saikat is an MMA, boxing, and arm wrestling content writer at The MMA India Show and The Sports Room. Apart from combat sports, he also engages in Indian sports content at The Sports India Show. Currently pursuing an MBA from Jadavpur University, Saikat's other interests lie in motorcycling, working out, and travelling.


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