Why Lewis Hamilton will wear a rainbow helmet for Qatar Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton unveiled a rainbow helmet on the opening day of practice at the Qatar Grand Prix on Friday.

The seven-time world has called on Formula 1 to hold Qatar to account during the first Grand Prix to be held in the country.

Qatar’s human rights record, along with Saudi Arabia, is described as “extremely troubling” by Amnesty International.

Sexual acts between people of the same sex are illegal in Qatar and are punishable by prison sentences or, in some cases, the death penalty.

On Thursday, after arriving in Qatar for this weekend’s Grand Prix, Hamilton said: “As sports go to these places, they are duty-bound to raise awareness for these issues.

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“These places need scrutiny. Equal rights is a serious issue.”

Hamilton trails title rival Max Verstappen by 14 points ahead of this weekend’s race, having cut the Dutchman’s lead by taking an important victory at the Brazilian Grand Prix last weekend.

Saudi Arabia will host the penultimate race of the season in two weeks’ time, while the final race of the campaign will be staged in Abu Dhabi the following week.

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