Reports suggest that the seven-time F1 champion Lewis Hamilton has been given an exemption from the new jewellery related ban. The FIA had recently announced a clampdown on piercings and other jewellery for safety reasons for drivers during the race. As reported, Hamilton would not wear any jewellery and will be on a two-race exemption for his body piercing. But he must remove the piercings before the Monaco Grand Prix on 29 May, the sources added.
FIA race director Niels Wittich talked about the new regulations on jewellery that can reduce heat transmission protection and thus may increase the risk of burn injuries in the event of a fire.
“The wearing of jewellery during the competition can hinder both medical interventions as well as subsequent diagnosis and treatment should it be required following an accident,” he added.
“I can’t remove at least two of them,” Hamilton
Hamilton was one of the voices against this and considered the decision unnecessary. The Brit also went on to talk about how he wouldn’t mind missing the entire race as Mercedes have a replacement driver. “If they stop me (racing) then so be it. We’ve got a spare driver,” he said. “There’s lots to do in the city anyway so I’ll be good either way.”
While addressing the jewellery issue he said, “I can’t remove at least two of them. One I can’t really explain where it is. But what I can say is its platinum that I have, so it’s non-magnetic, it’s never been a safety issue in the past. I’ve had in 16 years so many MRI scans and not had to take out the platinum.”
“I feel particularly in a way targeted to Lewis,” Vettel
One of Hamilton’s rivals, four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel also called this issue unneeded. He said, “I think it is a bit unnecessary to blow this topic up. Probably at this stage, it’s more of a personal thing and I feel particularly in a way targeted to Lewis.”
“We spoke about underpants as well. Is that the most exciting thing we can talk about? To some degree, it’s personal freedom. We are old enough to make our choices outside the car, we should be old enough to make choices also inside the car.”