Formula One to stop drivers taking the knee before races

Lewis Hamilton will have to stop taking the knee at the front of the grid after Formula One bosses decided to end the gesture.

Hamilton and a number of his fellow drivers have taken the knee at every race for the past two seasons in a show of solidarity against racism.

But F1 is set to pull the allocated slot from its pre-race schedule for the new season which starts in Bahrain next month.

The sport has instead vowed to build on the impact of the gesture – announcing on Tuesday that it will extend its funding commitment to the Formula One Engineering Scholarship programme for underrepresented groups until 2025 – and will carry on screening an anti-racism message ahead of every race.

“The [knee] gesture was important for the ones that believed that was an important gesture, because we need to respect everyone,” F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali told Sky Sports.

“But now is the time to move on and take some other action. The action is the focus on the diversity of our community, and this is the first step.’’

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