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Hamilton praises Wolff's action against FIA

Lewis Hamilton is “incredibly proud” of Susie Wolff for filing a criminal complaint against the FIA, which - along with Formula 1 and motorsport - lacks “transparency” and “accountability”.

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG, Susie Wolff

Photo by: Steve Etherington / Motorsport Images

F1 Academy managing director Wolff revealed ahead of this weekend’s Australian Grand Prix that she has personally filed a criminal complaint in the French courts against the FIA.

In December, the FIA started looking into a potential conflict of interest between Wolff and her husband Toto - the Mercedes motorsport boss - supposedly after F1 team bosses complained that confidential information had been shared between them.

But the paddock came out in strong defence of Wolff and in a coordinated reply, denied complaining to the FIA, causing the governing body to back down from any investigation.

While the matter quieted down in public, Wolff has now taken action.

“There has still not been any transparency or accountability in relation to the conduct of the FIA and its personnel in this matter,” she wrote.

“I feel more than ever it is important to stand up, call out improper behaviour and make sure people are held to account. Whilst some may think silence absolves them from responsibility - it does not.”

Hamilton has come out in strong defence of Wolff, praising her efforts to shine a light on an organisation and sport that lacks accountability and transparency.

Susie Wolff and Toto Wolff, Team Principal and CEO, Mercedes

Susie Wolff and Toto Wolff, Team Principal and CEO, Mercedes

Photo by: Steve Etherington / Motorsport Images

This comes days after reports that a now-suspended female Red Bull employee has complained to the FIA regarding the behaviour of team boss Christian Horner, while the governing body has also completed an investigation into claims that its own president Mohammed Ben Sulayem had attempted to influence officiating in the 2023 Saudi Arabian and Las Vegas GPs.

Seven-time F1 world champion Hamilton said: “Firstly, I'm incredibly proud of Susie. She's so brave. She stands for such great values. She's such a leader.

“In a world where often people are silenced, for her to be standing up sends such a great message. I love that she's taking it out of this world, filing it from outside, because there is a real lack of accountability here within this sport, within the FIA.

“Things that are happening behind closed doors, there is no transparency, there is clearly no accountability.

“How can you trust the sport and what is happening here if you didn't have that?

“Hopefully, this stand that she's taken now will create change, have a positive impact, and especially for women.

“We're living in the time where the message is 'If you file a complaint, you'll be fired.' That is a terrible narrative to be projecting to the world.

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 Team, signs autographs for fans

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 Team, signs autographs for fans

Photo by: Simon Galloway / Motorsport Images

“So, especially when we're talking about inclusivity here in the sport, we need to make sure that we're staying true to the core values here.”

Team-mate George Russell added: “You trust that the leaders in this sport have the best interest at their heart rather than their own interests… When we don't have the facts and figures, and there is no transparency, you always think there's something being hidden.

“That's why it's so important for the sport now to send the right message to everybody who's supporting Formula 1, watching Formula 1, wants to be involved in Formula 1, that things aren't just swept under the carpet.”

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