Lewis Hamilton speaks out against Formula 1 racetrack in Rio

Lewis Hamilton has asked Mercedes to go vegan and ditch its animal-based leather. Credit: PA.

Formula 1 World Champion Lewis Hamilton speaks out against the plans to build a new F1 racetrack in Rio. The track would decimate most of the city’s flatland area and more than 180’000 trees.

The 200-hectare forest Camboatá Forest is home to a myriad of wildlife, including snakes, capybaras and caimans, as well as 21 endangered species. Most of this sub-tropical forest would be leveled to make way for the new Formula 1 track, prompting Hamilton to speak out: “There is a global crisis with deforestation,” he said. “The world doesn’t need a new circuit.”

The plan has been enthusiastically backed by Brazil’s far-right president, Jair Bolsonaro but has come under fire from environmentalists.

Bolsonaro also has political motivation for the move – the current F1 track in Brazil is in São Paulo and a move to Rio would be a huge coup for him against political rivals.

A leaked letter from F 1 CEO Chase Carey to a Rio governor earlier this month said that while it had been agreed for the racetrack to go ahead, certain ‘environmental licences’ were still outstanding.


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Written by

Sarah Keane

Former teacher and health services manager with a Degree in English, Sarah moved to Spain from Southern Ireland with her husband, who runs his own car rental business, in 2019. She is now enjoying a completely different pace and quality of life on the Costa Blanca South, with wonderful Spanish and expat friends in Cabo Roig. Sarah began working with Euro Weekly News in 2020 and loves nothing more than bringing all the latest national and international news to her local community.