For Immediate Release:
December 20, 2022
Moira Colley 202-483-7382
London – Once PETA U.K.’s Person of the Year, Lewis Hamilton now finds himself in the doghouse for failing to speak out against Formula 1’s parent company, Liberty Media, for sponsoring the cruel Iditarod, the 1,000-mile race in Alaska in which over 150 dogs have died from being forced to pull heavy sleds through some of the most extreme weather conditions on the planet.
The dog guardian and ethical vegan has previously been spotted dining with Liberty Media CEO Greg Maffei. In a letter, PETA President Ingrid Newkirk urges the racing icon to be true to his reputation for defending the underdog: “We know you do care about dogs, so please don’t continue to stand idly by as animals continue to suffer or your silence will be taken as complicity. A word from you could save dogs every bit as precious as your Roscoe.”
The 2022 Iditarod dog-sled race ended in a debacle over officials’ shameful decision to demote and impose fines on mushers who took dogs indoors to prevent them from dying in perilous storms. Nearly 250 dogs were pulled from the trail due to exhaustion, illness, or injury. The Iditarod’s official death toll doesn’t include countless dogs who were killed because they weren’t fast enough or who died during the off-season while chained to dilapidated boxes or plastic barrels in the bitter cold, a practice exposed by an undercover PETA investigation.
Just this year, Millennium Hotels and Resorts and Nutanix cut ties with the Iditarod, joining former sponsors ExxonMobil—once a major sponsor to the tune of $250,000 a year—Jack Daniel’s, Coca-Cola, Wells Fargo, Alaska Airlines, and 14 other companies.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.