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Last Updated: Monday, 4 February 2008, 17:47 GMT
Ferdinand wants racism crackdown
Rio Ferdinand
This is not the first time Ferdinand has spoken out about racism
England defender Rio Ferdinand has called for action against racist abuse from fans after Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton was barracked in Spain.

The McLaren driver was subjected to abuse and chants during testing in Barcelona at the weekend.

"I'm intrigued to see the reaction of the governing bodies. Fingers crossed they get it right," said Ferdinand.

"If punishments are imposed I hope they're enough to stop people entering grounds or going out in public."

There should be no room for that kind of stupidity and ignorance in sport and society

Rio Ferdinand

Hamilton is unpopular in Spain after a controversial season with Spanish former team-mate Fernando Alonso in 2007, and some spectators blackened their faces and subjected him to taunting at an F1 practice session on Sunday.

Ferdinand played for England against Spain in Madrid in 2004, when England's black players were subjected to taunts throughout the game.

"There should be no room for that kind of stupidity and ignorance in sport and society," said Ferdinand.

Sports minister Gerry Sutcliffe said he took the incidents very seriously and would be contacting both the FIA and the Spanish sports minister to express his concerns.

Motorsport's governing body, the FIA, has warned Spanish circuits could face action if they fail to deal with any further incidents of racist behaviour.

Although no specific measures were spelt out, Spain could potentially lose one of its two Grands Prix, at Circuit de Catalunya or on the streets of Valencia.

Jerez and Valencia's Ricardo Tormo circuit are also used for pre-season testing.

Hamilton saddened by racist abuse
04 Feb 08 |  Formula One
Ferdinand wants bans for racists
22 Oct 06 |  Man Utd
Clemente faces sanctions
18 Jan 06 |  African
Fifa probes Spanish racist chants
18 Nov 04 |  Internationals
Reaction from Spanish press
18 Nov 04 |  Internationals
Spain 1-0 England
17 Nov 04 |  Internationals


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