How Formula 2 & Formula 3 can unite with Formula 1 Against Racism
Lewis Hamilton has led the way in F1 - but how can F2 and F3 play their part?
2020 has been a massive year when it comes to fighting racism. When George Floyd was killed by police back in May, the whole world stopped and paid attention to what was going on. Lewis Hamilton was one of the people who decided to then take active steps towards shining a light on racism and inequality within Formula 1. He went to Black Lives Matters marches in London and worked closely with Mercedes to send out a strong message to the F1 community. As part of ensuring that what Hamilton and the wider F1 community is fighting for is not a one off gimmick, Mercedes re-did their car livery for 2020 - and possibly beyond - and Formula 1 got all the drivers together to create the below video entitled 'End Racism'.
These acts, and others such as the #We race as one, certainly help to raise awareness of what is going on and why it's important for Formula 1 to play its role. Another part of that has been where Hamilton and his fellow drivers have taken a moment before each race to take a knee (with others standing but still showing their support for the cause). There was some trouble with this initially but it's now become a regular occurrence at each Grand Prix. But whilst all this has been happening in Formula 1, the same cannot be said for the junior categories of Formula 2 and Formula 3.
So where do they come in?
The driver line ups for both F2 & F3 are diverse in some respects - there are more nationalities present and drivers from different backgrounds in the sport and Formula 3 debuted its first female driver this year in Sophia Flörsch. Whilst there is not as much of a spotlight on Formula 2 and Formula 3 as there is on Formula 1, I still think it's important for all three categories of racing to be aligned when it comes to issues such as this. In the short term, all that would need to be done to do this is for the drivers of both Formulas to take action in the same way, e.g. creating a video like the one above where they too show their support to actively working towards ending racism. They could also have a moment before each race to either kneel or stand as the F1 drivers do as another way to peacefully advocate for change both in the sport and around the world.
Photo Credit: Mercedes Media Database
There will be some reading this who don't think that Formula 1 - or any of the other categories of racing - should delve into political or social justice waters and just stick to the racing. Ideally, that would be the case but only when racism has been defeated. Some will then ask "well where does this end? Do we do this for everything now?" I don't think so. That's not to say that there are other issues that Formulas 1, 2 and 3 shouldn't be protesting against but what is being protested against at any one time should be chosen carefully. Take the issue of racism for example. As far as I'm concerned, it belongs in the history books and not in the present day. The fact that it is still an issue being campaigned against in the 21st Century baffles me. There is no place for it and those standing united against it and advocating for meaningful change should be applauded.
So I don't see why F2 and F3 can't at least do the same as what F1 is doing - they're all part of the same family anyway. And with the issue of racism being as big a battle as it is, those driving in F2 and F3 will need to address it when they do make it into Formula 1. So why not get them involved now and use them to shed light on such an important issue.
I have done another piece in a similar vein to this one which focuses more on the Formula 1 side of this issue which you can find in the link below:
Feel free to check it out and let me know what you think.
What do you think? Should F2 & F3 get more involved in the fight to end racism? Let me know in the comments below.