Lewis Hamilton might be known for his love of fashion (and high-speed hijinks), but his latest outfit might have Australians saying ‘slow down, mate.’
The 36-year-old Mercedes driver is Formula One’s brightest star: the reigning driver’s champion and widely considered the Greatest Of All Time, Hamilton’s dominance in his sport is unparalleled. He’s also a bonafide style icon, known for his particularly sharp sartorial instincts off the track. Hamilton’s love of niche streetwear brands and confident style – as well as his prodigious racing talent – making him quite unlike any figure in F1 history.
Ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, Hamilton’s shown off yet another colourful outfit consisting of a yellow Prada bucket hat (one of many in his collection), sunglasses from his collaborative collection with Police and some breezy linen trousers. So far, so chic.
But it’s his t-shirt that made us have a double-take. A tie-dyed number from cult LA label Online Ceramics, the intentionally kitsch shirt features a graphic of two sunflowers with the text “Let’s ROOT For Each Other” – superficially, a very uncontroversial, good vibes message, but one that means something else entirely in Australia.
View this post on Instagram
In the US, rooting for someone is to cheer them on; support them. In Australia, rooting means something different… If you told someone down at the pub that you were rooting for Lewis Hamilton, they’d probably ask why you’ve dedicated your love life to a British F1 driver. Hell, just walking into a pub with Lewis’ shirt might be a provocative move in of itself.
His fans don’t seem bothered by the shirt’s message, however, with nothing but endless gushing praise for the man on Instagram. Maybe we’ve just immature. Or maybe they too are fans of Australia’s favourite pastime…
We’re only one Grand Prix into 2021 but the consensus among F1 tragics is that Hamilton’s likely to continue his domination of the sport. Hamilton took home gold at the Bahrain Grand Prix in March, the first time he’s won the first race of the season since the 2015 Australian Grand Prix. (Normally the Australian Grand Prix opens up the F1 season, but it’s been pushed back to November because of COVID.)
The Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in Imola kicks off this weekend, with fans keen to see the rivalry between Hamilton and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen heat up. Like last year, we’ll see multiple Grands Prix in Italy in 2021, with the Italian Grand Prix proper set to take place at Monza on the 12th of September.