Lewis Hamilton still wore his earrings and nose stud. He explained:
“They’re literally welded on so I’d have to get them chopped off.. they’ll be staying.”
Hamilton has come out to say that he will continue to wear his jewelry despite the new rules as he feels “you should be able to be who you are”.
Niels Wittich told all drivers before the Australian Grand Prix that “body piercings and metal neck chains” would be banned and they would check before the races. However, Hamilton continued to wear his to take a stance on this and when asked about this after the race he said that he “didn’t have any plans of removing them”.
“I feel they are personal things. You should be able to be who you are. There’s stuff that I can’t move.
“I literally can’t take these out [pointing to his right ear piercings]. They’re welded on so I’d have to get them chopped off or something. So they’ll be staying.”
This has actually been a rule since 2004 and Wittich explained it is in place to protect the driver when needing a quick escape from the car, so he decided to bring it back into the forefront of his pre-race notes this weekend.
As Hamilton is breaking the rules, he could face fines or have points removed from him but it is reported that the FIA are giving a grace period for all drivers so they will be monitoring to see if Hamilton decides to change his mind over the next few races.
“I’ve got certain piercings that I really just can’t take out that not many people know of. I’m kidding, I’m kidding!”
“It’s been the rule forever. Since I’ve been here it’s been the rule, so there’s nothing new. I’m just going to come with more jewelry next week.”
“How he has run the first few races has been respectful, solid and he hasn’t put a single foot wrong.
“But is that a battle he needs to have at this stage? However, if it turns out to be the biggest unfortunate misstep of a race director, I would take it a thousand times over.”