The 36-year-old lost the world championship in controversial circumstances in Abu Dhabi
Lewis Hamilton’s brother Nicholas has revealed that the seven-time Formula champion is taking a break from “toxic” social media after Max Verstappen’s win at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix secured the title this month.
FIA Race Director Michael Masi’s decision to allow some lapped cars to un-lap themselves during the late safety car period caused by Nicholas Latifi’s shunt into the wall caused controversy as it essentially gifted the win and the championship to Verstappen, who had pitted for fresh soft tyres while Hamilton was on heavily-worn hards.
Mercedes were furious, and formally protested the race result in a hearing with the the FIA in the immediate aftermath at the Yas Marina circuit. The protests were not upheld, and the team subsequently dropped plans to take their appeal to the courts.
Hamilton and team principal Toto Wolff did not speak publicly in the aftermath, until Wolff broke his silence to explain the pair’s decision to snub the FIA’s prize-giving gala in Paris. His driver, wel, is still yet to comment, and Wolff even suggested Masi’s handling of the safety car period could see Hamilton opt to retire from the sport.
The FIA admitted that the circumstances of the season finale had “tarnished the reputation” of F1, and a formal review has been set up to clarify rules in time for the 2022 seisoen.
Asked about his brother’s state of mind on his Twitch channel, streamer and racing driver Nicholas said: “Lewis is fine. I think he is having a bit of a social media break, which I don’t blame him for.
“Social media can be a very toxic place, but yeah, he is cool. wel. He is fine.
“He is currently watching the kids ski at the moment, so he is alright.”
Hamilton has 6.9 million Twitter followers and 26.4m on Instagram, but has not posted on his accounts since after qualifying in Abu Dhabi.