Lewis Hamilton has clarified his comments about India after receiving criticism for calling the country “such a poor place”.
Hamilton first drew the complaints when discussing grand prix venues in an interview with the BBC, where he stated that he did not fully understand the appeal of taking Formula 1 to new places rather than staying in countries with more racing heritage.
The five-time World Champion then went on to say in the interview that he felt “very conflicted” racing in India.
He said: “I’ve been to India before to a race which was strange because India was such a poor place yet we had this massive, beautiful grand prix track made in the middle of nowhere.
“I felt very conflicted when I went to that grand prix.”
This prompted a flurry of angry messages to Hamilton via his social media channels following that interview.
But now Hamilton has moved to clarify his original comments.
Please read 🇮🇳❤️ pic.twitter.com/UtXRvcP74A
— Lewis Hamilton (@LewisHamilton) November 15, 2018
“I noticed some people are upset with my comment on India,” he wrote.
“First off, India is one of the most beautiful places in the world.
“The culture there is incredible. I have visited and always had an amazing time however whilst it’s the fasted growing economy it also has a lot of poverty.
“My reference was that a grand prix there felt strange to drive past homeless people and then arrive in an huge arena where money was not an issue.
“They spent hundreds of millions on that track that is now never used. That money could have been spent on schools or homes for those in need.
“When we did have the race, nobody came because it was too expensive most likely or no interest.
“However I have met some amazing Indian fans.”