Hamilton unhappy at motorsport's lack of diversity, Albon offers a key reason why

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Lewis Hamilton has criticised the continued lack of diversity in Formula 1 and motorsport in general during his career.

When the six-time world champion burst onto the scene in 2007, his skin colour was just as big of a story as his talent, being the sport’s first driver of colour from non-Asian descent

13 years later, however, that remains true and Hamilton called it out earlier this year speaking at the Laureus Sports Awards, where he won Best Sportsman alongside footballer Lionel Messi.

"If I'm really honest, this is my 14th year and I see hardly any change in this industry,” he said. "When I talk about this industry, that's not just drivers, it's engineers, catering, media. It's all over.

"I don't have the answer as to why that's not changed but you can be sure I plan on having a more impactful way to try to change it."

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Hamilton’s criticism though isn’t just limited to ethnicity and he has since revealed the efforts his Mercedes team has made to be more open.

"Within our team, I've seen a lot more diversity," he said. "It's something I've spoken to (Mercedes motorsport boss) Toto (Wolff) about, at least a couple of years ago, and he hadn't noticed.

"I asked him 'Why am I the only one here?'

"Now it's just part of the thought process, it's where you're looking for people, recruitment, and I guess it's also getting the word out to people.

"When I spoke on stage [at the Laureus Sports Awards], it was about gender equality, being open to all classes, all religions, and I just don't think you see a vast range of that within this sport, for whatever reason, and I think that needs to change."

British-born driver Alex Albon, who races under Thai nationality, raised a very good point though about how the vast majority of international motorsport events are limited to Europe.

“I think it starts quite early through karting and things like that because most of it is done in Europe,” the Red Bull driver said via Crash.net

“Of course it’s very expensive to send your kid to Europe to race but that’s where the competition is. One constant is that it’s quite difficult to get drivers from elsewhere. 

“You even see there’s not an American driver. It’s hard in that sense to get the competition."

Albon though does think it is slowly changing. 

“It’s happening, it’s going in that direction and even in Thailand, there are some young kids coming through who look really promising. Hopefully we’ll see some more Asians," he added.

“I’ve been in Thailand throughout the year when I can and every time I go there it’s just getting bigger and bigger. 

“It’s really exciting and I want there to be more people from Thailand involved in F1.”