Red Bull sacks staff member after racist texts
By Mat Coch
Friday 30th July, 2021 - 11:38pm
Red Bull Racing has sacked a member of its trackside staff in the wake of the British Grand Prix controversy.
A clash between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen has sparked a war of words between the two teams.
The controversial incident saw Hamilton receive a barrage of racist messages via social media, prompting the sport to close ranks around the seven-time champ.
Among them was Red Bull, which stated it held a zero-tolerance approach to racism among its ranks.
It has now acted on that stance after a series of personal WhatsApp messages containing racist terms found their way on to social media from one of its staff members.
“We condemn racist abuse of any kind,” a spokesperson from Red Bull told Sky Sports.
“We have a zero-tolerance approach to racist behaviour within our team.
“The person in question is no longer an employee of Red Bull Racing.
“We will not be commenting further at this stage.”
The name of the individual, who was not a high-profile member of the team, has not been made public.
Speaking to the media on Thursday in Hungary, Hamilton admitted he had grown used to abuse online.
“It was amazing to see the support from the sport from my team, and from some of the drivers,” he said in reference to the stance his peers and rivals took to stand with the 36-year-old.
“I felt for the first time that I didn’t stand alone in the sport.
“There’s no room for that sort of abuse, but if I have to be on the receiving end of that in this industry for people to become aware, then that’s part of my journey.”
Formula 1 has adopted a strong stance on inclusion and diversity (among other social messages) through it’s We Race As One programme.
That has been supported by teams and drivers and formed part of the pre-race build up at every event.