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Nicholas Latifi

Latifi takes action after receiving abuse and death threats

Nicholas Latifi has announced a new partnership with an anti-cyberbullying foundation following the abuse he endured in the wake of the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Latifi Barcelona
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To news overview © RN365/Michael Potts

Williams driver Nicholas Latifi has announced that he is joining forces with the Cybersmile Foundation, a non-profit organisation committed to tackling all forms of cyberbullying and digital abuse.

Latifi was targeted on social media after last year's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, having brought out a late Safety Car in the season finale that inadvertently played a role in the outcome of the championship.

With the race neutralised, Verstappen took the opportunity to pit for fresh, Soft tyres, while Hamilton stayed out on old Hards. Verstappen then passed Hamilton to win the race - and with it the title - on the final lap.

In the wake of the incident, Latifi said it was "not my intention" to play a role in the title fight and later released a statement detailing the "hate, abuse and death threats" he received from fans.

Latifi joins forces with Cybersmile to tackle online abuse

Having also taken out security at one point over the winter, Latifi was compelled "to contribute somehow to the fight against online abuse and bullying" and "figure out a way that I could turn my own experiences after Abu Dhabi into a positive".

As such, Latifi has partnered with Cybersmile "to support its valuable work and help to carry its messages to F1's international fans".

"One of the things that struck me hardest during the winter is the reality that many people face cyberbullying and online abuse alone, or don't have the knowledge of how to deal with a situation and regain control," said Latifi as he revealed the news.

"For me, that's something that has to change. I'm determined to do what I can to help – especially around efforts to promote kindness, diversity and inclusion.

"Having spoken to Scott Freeman, the Cybersmile Foundation CEO, it's clear that his team understands how cyberbullying can manifest itself in multiple complex forms and, for me, the education, support and advice they offer to those that are experiencing problems online have the power to drive real, positive change.

"I'll be working with Cybersmile during the coming weeks to develop our collaborative plan together and I'll be sure to tell you about what we decide."

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