Motosport.com is no fly-by-night blog – it is a major racing website attracting 250-300 thousand unique visitors per month. This makes their recent Facebook post about F1 Driver Kimi Raikkonen disturbing on several levels. It’s piss-poor “journalism” and blatantly homophobic.
First of all, Motorsport.com posted a picture that they assume is Kimi Raikkonen. The image quality is fuzzy and poor at best. The shot obviously was taken from a great distance with a powerful lens and could be easily photo-shopped. They even admit that they aren’t sure if it’s Kimi. The image shows several men on a boat in a sunny location – one of the men appears to be applying suntan lotion on the shoulders of another man.
The picture was posted to their fan forums – and someone at the website decided to cross post the picture to the official Motorsport.com Facebook page with this additional comment, “Is this really Kimi? I may never look at the Iceman the same again. Kimi fans should not view this picture #F1 #sayitaintso”
Let’s break this down:
1) “Is this really Kimi?” – If Motorsport.com was not sure this is an image of Kimi – why would they post it? Actions like this do not give their site much journalistic integrity.
2) “I may never look at the Iceman the same again.” – So you would automatically consider someone to be less of a man if you found out he was gay? You would throw out his racing accomplishments and think less of him because of his sexual orientation? This is clearly offensive and displays a stunning amount of ignorance – again, very surprising from a “mainstream” website.
3) “Kimi fans should not view this picture, #f1 #SayItAintSo” – Say it ain’t so? It would really bother you THAT much if a gay guy drove a race car?
Motorsport.com reader, and openly gay AMA Pro Motorcycle racer Luke Huff commented on the post. He expressed his outrage and asked them to remove the offensive post. Instead of removing it, Motorsport.com apologized “if Luke was offended”………. how could he not have been?
Motorsport.com also offered to write a profile about Luke and his AMA race efforts – Luke declined their offer and again, simply asked that the post be removed.
Their offer for space on their site seems to be standard fair. I personally sent Motorsport.com an email to express my own feelings about their post and ask for its removal. Again, they apologized, “if I was offended” and offered to promote Q4G to their larger audience.
I declined their offer and again asked that the post be removed. That was over 48 hours ago and the post is still on their Facebook page. Of course, I (and other gay people) were offended – we just want the post removed. Blatant homophobia has no place on a mainstream racing site.
Thanks to a diehard F1 and Q4G fan from Latvia – turns out this picture of Kimi is legit….. and it was posted in the UK’s Daily Mail in late June. There were several pictures of Kimi applying suntan lotion on a buddy – but there were also several pictures of bikini clad women on the boat.
So while the picture is legit – the Motorsport.com folks fail to also to post pics of women on board while insinuating Kimi is gay.