Sebastian Vettel: 4x champ questions purity of some Formula 1 Grand Prix venues

sebastian vettel

Sebastian Vettel has called into question the 'purity' of some of the venues Formula 1 races at despite the financial benefit that they can offer.

The sport has taken increased action in recent years to promote social justice and inclusivity, sharing the 'We Race As One' message as an umbrella for that.

Indeed, ahead of each race, we see drivers take a knee, or stand, against racial and other forms of discrimination and the 4x champ has regularly shared support for such campaigns, as well as frequently pushing and calling for better environmental awareness among other causes.

As a senior member of the grid and as one of the sport's most popular figures, Vettel is using his platform for good and clearly feels a sense of duty and purpose in speaking out and standing up for what he feels is right, and it's clear there is some unease from him with some of the venues Formula 1 heads to, with some countries having poor human rights records.

“There’s a lot of countries where we go to and a lot of money, in a way, that we receive that maybe it’s not very pure,” he said in an interview with the New York Times.

“It’s a difficult thing to get into, obviously. Some countries are better off than others in this respect.

“I think, in a way, it’s wrong we go to certain places because then if you had morale, then you would just say no.

“But obviously, financially, I can see there’s a huge incentive for Formula 1 as a business to go there.

“Where does it leave the mechanics, the engineers, the drivers?


“Where does it leave the people employed by a team to do a job that they willingly do, and it’s not their choice or their decision where to practice that job? I think it’s a difficult one.

“As a broader organisation, I think it’s to do with the responsibility that we have to, overall, just grow in awareness and consciousness that we have a responsibility with our actions.

“Whether that is hosting a Formula 1 event, whether that is running a company, whether that is selling a product.

“I think we need to start facing more the consequences of our actions and take on that responsibility.”

The Aston Martin ace is far from the only person to have raised such questions and issues around some of the fixtures on the F1 calendar but he is certainly one of the more high profile.

The sport is a global one and should explore new parts of the world to bring the championship to race fans worldwide, and the hope has to be that in these countries where there are issues the extra spotlight on them will increase and drive change for the better.

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