Hamilton ‘wrong’ to snub GPDA – Stewart

Tue, 18 March 2008, 05:59

Sir Jackie Stewart has hit out at Lewis Hamilton for refusing to join formula one’s independent driver union, the safety-oriented Grand Prix Drivers’ Association.

The triple world champion, who still attends grands prix as a representative for Williams’ sponsor RBS, fears that fourteen years after the last F1 fatalities at Imola in 1994, drivers like McLaren’s Hamilton have become “complacent”.

“I’m surprised and disappointed,” Stewart, who worked tirelessly to improve safety for drivers in the 70s, said.

Hamilton announced in Australia last weekend that, despite pressure from F1 stalwarts including Pedro de la Rosa and Mark Webber, he does not think he has enough time to devote to the GPDA’s cause.

“He has been badly advised,” Stewart said. “It is completely wrong not to be involved.”

Stewart is also quoted by The Times newspaper as questioning Hamilton’s decision to eschew professional agents in favour of continuing to be managed solely by his father.

Anthony Hamilton revealed recently that, not only was it his decision for Lewis to move to Switzerland, he also poorly advised the 23-year-old to tell the media that minimising tax was not a motivating factor.

Stewart tells Hamilton: “Once you get bigger than your dad, working with your dad becomes more difficult.”

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