Mercedes to race with all-black F1 livery to support diversity

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The defending constructor champion team announced the new look of the Mercedes W11 on Monday before the opening of this weekend’s season in Austria.Mercedes has traditionally raced in silver throughout its F1 journey, dating back to 1954, but will now operate in black throughout the new season.

The new black livery base retains the green trim of the title sponsor Petronas, the red elements of the main partner INEOS and the speckled star design on the engine hood. The car will also run with “End Racism” written on the Halo.

Pilots Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas will race in black coveralls until 2020 and will also adjust their helmet design accordingly.

Mercedes also confirmed that it would launch a new diversity and inclusion program before the end of the season to address the lack of diversity within the team, with only 3% of its workforce identifying itself as belonging to a minority ethnic group.

“Racism and discrimination have no place in our society, our sport or our team: that is a fundamental belief at Mercedes. But having the right beliefs and the right mindset is not enough if we remain silent, “said team director Toto Wolff.

“We want to use our voice and our global platform to defend respect and equality, and the Silver Arrow will run in black throughout the 2020 season to show our commitment to greater diversity within our team and of our sport.

“We will not back down from our weaknesses in this area, nor from the progress we still have to make; our livery is our public commitment to take positive action.

“We intend to find and attract the best talent in the widest possible range of courses, and create credible pathways for them to reach our sport, in order to build a stronger and more diverse team in the world. ‘to come up. ”

This is the latest major declaration from the F1 world amid global protests against racial injustice, sparked by the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis last month.

The Mercedes Hamilton driver – the only black driver in F1 history – has been particularly vocal in recent weeks, calling on the “white-dominated” F1 community to be more aware of racism and racial injustice.

Hamilton also recently announced plans for a new commission to improve diversity in motorsport and STEM industries.

“It is so important that we capture this moment and use it to inform us if you are an individual, a brand or a company in order to make real meaningful changes when it comes to ensuring equality and inclusiveness, “said Hamilton.

“I have personally experienced racism in my life and have seen my family and friends experience racism, and I speak from the bottom of my heart when I appeal for change.

“When I told Toto about my hopes for what we could achieve as a team, I said it was so important that we stay united.

“We want to build a legacy that goes beyond sport, and if we can be the leaders and start building more diversity within our own business, it will send such a strong message and give others the confidence to start a dialogue on how they can implement change. ”

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Last week, F1 launched a new campaign called “We Race as One”, promoting inclusiveness and greater diversity in the sport. The campaign’s brand image will be present on all 20 cars in Austria, as well as being a key part of F1’s messages in the coming season.

Mercedes is the second team to make a late change to its livery before the new season. Williams unveiled its new look last Friday after it split with title sponsor ROKiT in May.

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