Lewis Hamilton has vowed to keep wearing jewellery during grand prix weekends despite it being outlawed by the Race Director.
Ahead of the Australian Grand Prix last weekend, a new segment appeared in Race Director Niels Wittich’s pre-race notes.
It outlined that “the wearing of jewellery in the form of body piercing or metal neck chains is prohibited during the competition and may therefore be checked before the start”.
However, Hamilton competed at Sunday’s race with piercings in his ears and nose, and has asserted that he has no intentions to remove them.
“I don’t have any plans on removing [the jewellery],” Hamilton said. “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 ones out, these ones on my right ear, they are literally welded in, so I’d have to get chopped off or something. So they’ll be staying in.”
Although the regulation has been in place for some time, it is now being brought to light as a method to protect the driver by not potentially hindering their rapid escape from the car.
It’s not yet known what sort of punishment Hamilton or other drivers could face for wearing jewellery, however it is likely that they would be fined.
Speaking on Thursday ahead of the race weekend in Melbourne, Hamilton made light of the situation.
“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,” he said.
“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 jewellery next week.”
Hamilton ended Sunday’s race in fourth place, behind Mercedes team-mate George Russell.