New FIA race director Niels Wittich has followed the letter of the International Sporting code by requiring that drivers don’t wear jewellery or non-approved underwear while in the cockpit.

The discussion has gone for several race weekends, but reached a head in Miami, with the removal of wedding rings a particular point of discussion.

Drivers were also formally told via Wittich’s notes to teams that watches are included in the ban.

Hamilton appeared to be making a point when he arrived at the track on Friday wearing three watches and multiple articles of jewellery.

He was given an exemption of two races to deal with items that he said he could not remove himself, the publicly visible one being his nose stud.

The discussion on jewellery came under renewed scrutiny on Saturday when Esteban Ocon had a huge crash in FP3, hitting the same concrete wall struck by Carlos Sainz in FP2.

Ocon revealed that the subject of the unprotected wall had been discussed in the drivers’ briefing on Friday night, but no changes were made to the location overnight.

The apparent disconnect between the debate about jewellery and lack of response to a specific request to modify that area of the track with Tecpro did not go unnoticed by drivers.

Jewellery of Lewis Hamilton at Miami GP 2022

“I mean, this whole safety thing man,” said Hamilton when asked about the barrier. “When they told me about the jewellery, they were saying safety is everything. I said, ‘Well, what's happened for the last 16 years? I've had jewellery on for 16 years. So was safety not an issue back then?’

“When we come to these new tracks, they do the best job. I think they've done a great job in all of these new tracks with safety, you can't predict every single corner, where we're going to need Tecpro, but safety on track is great.

“So I think we of course after an experience like this weekend, we can know that that’s an area that we can improve on. But that's a part of the lessons we learned.”

When asked by if he would be taking the nose stud out in Monaco following his two-race exemption Hamilton gave a clear “no” in response.

He then added: “I got an exemption here, I’ll get an exemption the rest of the year. Wedding rings are allowed.”

Pressed on whether the debate would continue in Monaco, he said: “Sure. I’ll wear four watches next time.”

Earlier on Saturday Mercedes boss Toto Wolff suggested that the jewellery ban was a subject of a direct discussion between Hamilton and FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem.

“I think what was needed was a dialogue between Lewis and Mohammed,” he said. “It is clear that regulations are here to protect the drivers; on the other side, we need to keep the possibility on diversity and the means of expression and expressing yourself.

“And we know that this is important for Lewis, so yesterday without going into detail where the piercing stayed, I'm sure they will come to a good resolution.”

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