Lewis Hamilton will wear jewellery when competing at the Australian Grand Prix, defying orders by the FIA. New race director Niels Wittich reminded drivers to not wear jewellery when behind the wheel in his pre-race notes.
However, Hamilton was spotted wearing earrings before putting his helmet on. Speaking on Sky Sports F1, Ted Kravitz suggested the FIA would now have a grace period for the new rules.
He said: “It seems there might be a grace period for a couple of races on that. Lewis Hamiton not doing anything about that, it seems like he is going to defy that order from the new race director.
“Maybe he has got some grace period on that for a couple of races. Lewis Hamilton seems to think ‘Im not going to pay any attention to that’ and not change anything.”
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In his pre-event notes, Wittich said: “The wearing of jewellery in the form of body piercing or metal neck chains is prohibited during the competition and may therefore be checked before the start.” The ban was introduced in 2005 but has been brought up this weekend as the FIA aim to clampdown on safety.
It is believed jewellery could cause further injury to drivers or stop them from escaping a car. Ahead of the weekend, Hamilton had warned he would possibly defy the ban.
On Friday, he said: “I have got certain piercings that I can’t just take out and that not many people know of. I’m kidding. Since I’ve been here in F1, it’s been the rule, so there’s nothing new. I’m just going to come up with more jewellery next week.”
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Kravitz had warned Hamilton could be specifically targeted on the grid after qualifying yesterday.
He said: “It did seem to be on the face of it, a measure, or wanting to enforce a rule specifically targeted at Lewis Hamilton who of course has ear piercings and a nose piercing. I asked the FIA this and they said no absolutely not.”
“We don’t know what’s going to happen with the piercings tomorrow because they said they would check it before the race. So what are they going to do? Go up to Lewis Hamiton, someone is going to check if he has his nose pricing in or if he has his earrings in.”