Lewis Hamilton currently leads the Formula One Drivers’ Standings as the Mercedes driver continues his unerring dominance in the sport. He is nearing seven world titles, which would see him go level with all-time great Michael Schumacher. Yet, despite the Briton’s success, Hamilton has been criticised by some. The Mercedes driver has had his tax record questioned at times because he lives abroad.
However, Hamilton today is among the UK’s 5,000 biggest taxpayers.
The six-time world champion’s earnings allow him to contribute a significant amount to the exchequer while working in Britain, where his team is based.
Labour peer Lord Peter Hain told Express.co.uk that the anger at Hamilton is undeserved.
Lord Hain has been a notable backer of the Mercedes driver in recent years, and also knows Hamilton’s family well.
In 2019, several key figures suggested he should receive a knighthood, not just because of his sporting triumphs, but also his tax and charity contributions.
He told Express.co.uk: “Hamilton has a home in Britain, he pays taxes in Britain – he works around the world and he works in music and fashion in America.
“But he pays tax in Britain – so there is no excuse not to give him a knighthood.”
Lord Hain also said that Hamilton has proved why sports stars should speak out on issues outside of the sport.
In recent months, Lewis Hamilton has campaigned in support of Black Lives Matter – and also hit out at other F1 figures.
Hamilton criticised F1 for a “rushed” and “embarrassing” display in Hungary last month after drivers failed to all gather in time to show their opposition against racism, or all kneel, while he also pointed the finger at Grosjean.
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Lord Hain said Hamilton’s campaigning has been admirable.
He added: “He is a Briton to be proud of and is a role model for other sports people of any colour.
“I think it’s good that Raheem Sterling and Marcus Rashford have been vocal, Megan Rapinoe is another example.
“There’s been a break from the idea that sports people should be seen on the pitch or the track but never heard.
“It’s good that sports people are speaking out on social justice and morality and Lewis has done that admirably.”