Michael Masi ‘likely’ to be replaced amid FIA restructure

Masi’s decisions at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix could see him out of a job

Sarah Rendell
Friday 28 January 2022 09:28
Comments
<p>Masi’s decision-making has been called into question </p>

Masi’s decision-making has been called into question

The FIA are planning a re-management structure which could see race director Michael Masi out of a job ahead of the 2022 season.

It’s thought the governing body are consulting teams on the matter and are understood to be thinking about implementing a support structure around the race director. This comes after Red Bull boss Christian Horner and Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff both lobbied Masi during the closing moments of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix which determined the 2021 result.

A safety car was deployed and once the track was clear Masi allowed some cars to unlap themselves and others not. This led to Max Verstappen overtaking Lewis Hamilton on the final lap to take the world title.

Many believe Masi didn’t follow protocol and an inquiry has been launched into what happened at the race. Masi’s actions could see him out of a job as many teams have recommended the move to FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem, according to the BBC.

Sources say they can’t see how Masi will maintain his position after his actions. While some teams want him to go its thought the move isn’t one backed by all in the F1 with Red Bull denying they want Masi to go and Ferrari “unaware of the request”.

If Masi does go it could restore some trust in the FIA for Hamilton, who is deciding his future in the sport. The British driver has been out of the spotlight since Abu Dhabi, only making a public appearance to receive his knighthood. It’s understood he will decide whether to race when the inquiry is published which will be just before the 2022 season starts in March.

Red Bull’s Horner had previously said he believed the ending of the 2021 campaign would soon be forgotten by those in and around the sport. But one senior voice told the BBC: “Anyone thinking this would go away has not realised the gigantic size of this event.”

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in