Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Yas Marina, 2021

FIA to reveal findings of inquiry into Abu Dhabi restart row in February

2022 F1 season

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The FIA will present the findings of the investigation into the final laps of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to the F1 Commission in February, the governing body has announced.

In a statement published on Thursday to social media, the FIA confirmed that an investigation is underway into race control’s handling of the final restart of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, in which only the five lapped cars between Lewis Hamilton and title rival Max Verstappen – and none of the others – were permitted to overtake the Safety Car before the final lap restart.

The FIA also confirmed that they would present the findings of their report to the F1 Commission – which represents F1 teams and stakeholders within the organisation – before eventually announcing their “final decisions” at the World Motor Sport Council in Bahrain on Friday 18th March, the day of first practice for the 2022 season opening Bahrain Grand Prix.

“Following the decision of the World Motor Sport Council in Paris on 15th December 2021, the FIA administration, under the leadership of Mohammed Ben Sulayem, has started the detailed analysis of the events of the last Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix,” the statement reads. “The FIA president launched a consultation with all F1 teams on various issues, including this one.

“The outcome of the detailed analysis will be presented to the F1 Commission in February and final decisions will be announced at the World Motor Sport Council in Bahrain on 18th March.”

The FIA also confirmed that secretary general of motor sport, Peter Bayer, had also been appointed as director for single seaters – a role previously filled by F1 race director Michael Masi. FIA president Mohammed Ben Suyalem has asked Bayer for “proposals to review and optimise the organisation of the FIA F1 structure for the 2022 season.”

The probe into the controversial finish to the championship-deciding Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was originally instigated at the direction of previous FIA president, Jean Todt, in the closing days of final term in the position.

Further to the investigation, the use of the safety car will be discussed as an item on the agenda of the Sporting Advisory Committee meeting on 19th January. Following that, the FIA said there would be a “shared discussion with all F1 drivers.”

The announcement comes almost a month after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix where the championship was decided after controversy over the use of the Safety Car, prompting protests from the Mercedes team. After their protests were dismissed by stewards, Mercedes eventually chose not to bring the matter to the FIA’s International Court of Appeal.

Hamilton, who lost the drivers’ world championship to rival Verstappen after leading the vast majority of the Abu Dhabi race, has not made any public comment on the race after speaking in parc ferme immediately following the chequered flag.

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Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

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  • 66 comments on “FIA to reveal findings of inquiry into Abu Dhabi restart row in February”

    1. What a bunch of amateurs. Can someone please offer their communications services to these people before they set themselves on fire?

      1. It is rather clumsy isn’t it.

        And just reinforces my suspicion that this is a PR exercise with no casualties except moving Masi to one side and appointing a stewarding director to control the race itself. What Masi’s role will then be is vague as he is no longer in charge of single seater competitions and since he took over we have a separate starter. Perhaps honorary piñata?

        It does show how immense was the role undertaken by Charlie Whiting. Although the strain may have contributed to his death.

        1. I believe that Zambian referee Janny Sikazwe is to take over from Masi ;)

    2. The FIA also confirmed that they would present the findings of their report to the F1 Commission – that represents F1 teams and stakeholders within the organisation – before eventually announcing their “final decisions” at the World Motor Sport Council in Bahrain on Friday 18 March, the day of first practice for the 2022 season opening Bahrain Grand Prix.

      This is the worst. I’m disappointed by Masi’s actions in Abu Dhabi and the investigation is necessary. But why do we have to start the 2022 season by talking about this controversy?

      1. @hotbottoms Good question. Maybe because they actually love the controversy more than reaching solutions and reducing the likelihood of similar controversies in the future? Maybe to ensure Hamilton is locked into 2022 before saying they’ll do absolutely nothing of consequence? Who knows.

      2. The controversy made F1 the most talked about ‘sport’ in the world when it happened, so I wonder, I wonder, I wonder, if that’s why they want it to coincide with the start of the new season?

        1. Absolutely. No such thing as…

    3. A clear-cut case shouldn’t take this long. They’ve already had more than four weeks, such time-wasters.

      1. Indeed, no real mistakes were made other than not letting all lapped cars unlap themselves on lap 56 instead of 57.

        It would be ridiculous for Masi to get fired over this, what is next Mercedes not liking the FIA technical person for finding a technical breach on their car and complaint till FIA fires that person.

        1. No real mistakes apart from one massive one by not allowing all lapped cars to unlap themselves which directly changed the outcome of the biggest motorsport championship in the world. Yeah, he needs to go. And I dread to see what you consider a big mistake…

          1. Indeed. During the last 4 or 5 races of the season, drivers 1 and 2 were treated differently than drivers 3-20. The final lap of the final race put an exclamation point on that fact.

          2. Pretty obvious given their past posting history that they would consider it a major mistake if it had been Max leading at the time.

          3. Please, without starting a heated fight, explain me this, because I sincerely don’t understand this arguement that keeps coming up.

            How would have letting all lapped cars unlap themselves directly change the outcome of the race? How would letting Stroll and Ricciardo also unlap themselves from between Sainz and Verstappen make any difference to the final outcome? Are you implying that Sainz would have been the game changer then, who would somehow make Hamilton finish ahead of Verstappen? How? In my view, the call that only the cars between Hamilton and Verstappen may unlap themselves was highly unusual, but leaving Stroll and Ric in their respective track positions simply had no effect on the last lap battle between Verstappen and Hamilton for drivers’ title whatsoever.

            (I have also read in many comments in the past weeks that the race should have been red flagged. That would have been, of course, a very welcome turn of events for Hamilton supporters, as it would have granted him a free set of new tyres as well, which would have more or less guaranteed his title defence, having been outright faster than Verstappen previously all race long. But red flagging a race for only one crashed car, stranded away from the racing line, with no significant amount of debries, with no need to medically attend to the driver? Red flag is not meant for a clean-cut situation like this.)

            The only problematic aspect here seems to be the timing of the call for lapped drivers to unlap. Masi should have made up his mind to make that call half a lap sooner, and then Article 48.12 would have been upheld to the letter of the rule. He made his decision into Lap 57, which makes it too late for the “once the last lapped car has passed the leader the safety car will return to the pits at the end of the following lap” part of the rules apply. However, stewards ruled that Artical 48.13 has taken care of that… so again? How would have any of this changed by letting Stroll and Ricciardo also unlap themselves along with Norris, Alonso, Ocon, Leclerc, and Vettel?

            1. If all cars had being allowed to be unlapped the race would have finished under a safety car

            2. @palagyi
              Because races are more than who finishes first. There are points for the top 10 places and it matters to some driver’s contracts where they finish in any place. Masi only took into consideration what the top 2 cars were doing and screwed every other driver. Ricciardo pitted the same as Max but was left uncapped whilst the drivers ahead of him unlapped.

            3. Also apart from the other 2 responses from Neil & @jimfromus, Sainz WOULD have been a factor in the last lap. You see 3 way fights all the time. If the driver 2nd in a 3 way fight dive bombs the leader to try and overtake, then that slows the leader and the 2nd place car. This gives the driver in 3rd place a chance to make an overtake.

              …So yeah Sainz was on old tyres, but so was Lewis. Sainz might have won, or he might have overtaken Lewis. Maybe his presence would have prevented Max making the overtake immediately in the way he did.

              The cars let through started the last lap 1 minute 15 secs ish behind Hamilton. They were stopped from racing anyone ahead of them. The cars not allowed to unlap themselves were not allowed to do anything in the race.

              It was all super weird.

            4. @palagyi Letting ALL cars unlap themselves would mean that Verstappen had a chance of being overtaken. Sainz was in 3rd at the time. He had just as much right to go for 2nd than Verstappen had of going for 1st. It’s entirely feasible that Sainz gets a great restart and fights Verstappen into turn 1, allowing Hamilton to get enough of a gap to win the race and the championship.

              You are right that it had no effect on the title battle, and that is the point – it could have done, but Masi artificially removed any effect.

            5. @minnis So you are suggesting that Masi directly left Stroll and Ric in position so Sainz wouldn’t be a threat on his 18 laps old mediums to the faster Red Bull on brand new softs. That sounds so far-fetched that I highly doubt even you believe it. Sainz didn’t even make it past Ric as long as they were spottable in cameras despite obviously having blue flags on his side. Also, you are saying that green flagging the race for the last lap would be the good decision, as long as Sainz somehow takes over Verstappen, and Hamilton takes the title? It’s a bit like “stop the count in Pennsylvania, but keep counting in Arizona”-mentality…

              @jimfromus I’m not questioning your goodwill towards the fairness of racing in general, but the Safety Car row of Abu-Dhabi has never, ever truly been about anything else than the title-deciding last lap duel it resulted in between Verstappen and Hamilton, and my question, while I phrased it “How would have letting all lapped cars unlap themselves directly change the outcome of the race?”, clearly meant the outcome of the title. What difference would it have made on the title whether Ric overtakes Vet and maybe Lec for 10th after unlapping once action starts again on the last lap? None, as I’m pretty sure you yourself know too. However, I also think that Masi seemed to have a very tight attention span in the given situation and focused all his efforts on how to not to end the race under SC.

              Neil: “If all cars had being allowed to be unlapped the race would have finished under a safety car” – Article 48.13 overrides that, as the stewards confirmed after the race. Letting Ric and Stroll unalp themselves too wouldn’t have magically forced the race director to finish under safety car conditions.

              All in all, this narrative of “not allowing all lapped cars to unlap themselves directly changed the outcome of the biggest motorsport championship in the world ” is still very far from convincing.

        2. Agreed. It’s a massive controversy because it decided the world championship. But the only questionable action from Masi is the procedure around lapped cars, which in the scheme of the entire incident that played out, is only one small part.

          Latifi crashed – Not Masi’s fault.
          Safety Car deployed – 100% the correct decision.
          Mercedes and Red Bull tire & strategy decisions – Not Masi’s fault.
          Length of time safety car was out – 100% correct to ensure both the safety of the marshalls and a green flag finish.
          Removing lapped cars – Entirely consistent with standard safety car procedure.
          Removing only some of the lapped cars and on the lap that the safety car came in – Unprecedented race directors call made in the heat of the moment and rightly deserves a review and clarification.

          For Masi to be fired over that would be ridiculous.

          1. Agree, I think masi has been terrible overall (his decision making the race where hamilton hit verstappen from the back was strange all race long), but there’s many things that were not his fault with the final incident, except one.

          2. You missed one other important rule: safety car goes into the pits the next lap after cars unlap themselves. Not the next corner.

            That was unprecedented, and an adjustment, shall we say, of the rules.

      2. @jerejj I think a couple of those weeks could be somewhat forgivable as they did coincide directly with the Christmas/New Year period. With the season finishing so late (and the enquiry only being announced a few days later), I can’t imagine that very much actually managed to happen before all the FIA staff breaked for Christmas and New Year, so I doubt very much progress was/could have been made until early January.

        Don’t know why it’s taken another week or so to get to this point though

    4. LOL. Nice way to start the first day of your office as president.

      1. I think Todt (and his Fia henchmen) and Liberty were part of the overall problem in the stewarding last season.

        One side pressuring to have more ‘show’ and the other to stop Mercedes dominance. The FIA appoints the stewards some of whom are on the Council and all of whom will pick up the vibes from the top.

        As a Schumacher/Ferrari praetorian Todt needs to be investigated to ensure no FIA bias was evident in dealings with Masi who is as much a pawn in all this as an incompetent baddie.

        1. One side pressuring to have more ‘show’ and the other to stop Mercedes dominance

          Can you elaborate more because as far as I remember, it was RBR that were caught by a technical directive after Hamilton and Wolff were very talkative about their “bendy wings”. They were caught by another TD when Wolff complained about their fast pitstops and by another TD when Hamilton accused them of playing with the tyre temperatures.

          The FIA also dismissed RBR queries about Mercedes front wing, PU and rear wing and Mercedes favourite stiffer tyres were introduced midseason. As for the floor rule changes – alongside the diffuser and the brake ducts – that Mercedes said that they were intended to stop their dominance were forced by the postponement of the all-new regulations to 2022. The trimming of the floor was agreed by Mercedes and the rest of the teams and the effect on the low rake cars was only evident in testing.

          1. with the tyre temperatures.

            ** tyre pressure

          2. @tifoso1989 there are indications that Red Bull were already under investigation over their pit stops before any public complaints, because the automated mechanism that Red Bull were alleged to be using would be illegal under the regulations (the automated signal being sent to the traffic light system they use would break the regulations that state that such signals have to be manually operated).

            Your claim that “The trimming of the floor was agreed by Mercedes and the rest of the teams” is completely wrong. The FIA enforced the rule change through a World Motorsport Council vote by claiming that it was necessary on safety grounds, and thus invoked Clause 2.2 of the Technical Regulations (“Any changes made by the FIA for safety reasons may come into effect without notice or delay.”) to make the change without requiring the teams to agree to that proposal.

            With regards to your claims over an investigation into Mercedes’s power unit – there was an investigation, and the reason Red Bull’s claims were dismissed was because the FIA pointed out to Red Bull that there was no evidence for their claims. Marko himself is on record as saying later in the season that their claim was based on erroneous information and that they got it wrong – so, even the team that raised the complaint now doesn’t seem to believe in that complaint.

            As for the claim that “Mercedes favourite stiffer tyres were introduced midseason” – you do realise that Red Bull’s public stance was that the changes made no noticeable difference? Horner publicly stated “The initial response from the drivers was pretty benign and it didn’t feel too different to what they had previously”, followed by stating that the data that the team collected from the races after the change indicated the changes didn’t seem to favour any particular team and that the overall behaviour of the tyres was very similar to what came before.

            Your claim that the tyres were “Mercedes friendly” was therefore publicly opposed by the very team that was competing directly against Mercedes and had the biggest public incentive to complain.

          3. @tifoso1989

            Can you elaborate more because as far as I remember, it was RBR that were caught by a technical directive after Hamilton and Wolff were very talkative about their “bendy wings”.

            That’s an…interesting perspective, because a whole bunch of teams changed their wings after the new measurements were introduced.

            And Toto said that they were erring too much in the other direction and would soften their wings, so Mercedes seems to have have similarly interpreted the rules differently from how they were intended, just in the other direction.

            They were caught by another TD when Wolff complained about their fast pitstops

            Red Bull have one of the best track records when it comes to pit stop safety, so it is far from obvious that the rules were changed specifically because of Red Bull’s fast pit stops. And it definitely doesn’t prove that RB were breaking any rules.

            You seem desperate to paint Red Bull as a team that breaks the rules, but your arguments are poor.

            and by another TD when Hamilton accused them of playing with the tyre temperatures.

            And now you are fully into the ‘alternative facts.’ The TD came after the tyre failures at Baku, a fact that you conveniently left out because it doesn’t fit your narrative. It’s purely a conspiracy theory by the radical Lewis fans that this was due to Red Bull breaking the rules. There is no proof for this at all.

            Fact is that Pirelli & F1 have changed the rules around tyres after every problem with those tyres, including after Silverstone 2020, where both Bottas & Hamilton got punctures and where Pirelly mandated higher pressures afterwards. If you were consistent in your conspiracies, you would have to (falsely) accuse Mercedes of breaking the rules there, as well.

    5. But but but…..everyone knows Lewis should have been ordered to give the pace back after Max his breathtaking overtake on lap. No need for an investigation.

      Thank god they didn’t so we could see Lewis fail twice at protecting the inside.

      And imagine celebrating a (dirty) winner who was saved twice by red flags for mistakes he himself was responsible for, instead of a driver who didn’t put a foot wrong all season.

    6. That is Lewis Hamilton retiring then. This needed to be settled sooner.

    7. Remember when everyone laughed at Vettel being dramatic about the Canada 2019 decision?

      Hamilton’s diva tantrums and unwillingness to face the music makes Seb look like a gentleman.

      1. what tantrum? what are you talking about? he was real magnanimous about it after the race. and he hasn’t said a word in public since. I think you are basing your comment on conjecture and innuendo rather than something Hamilton has actually said…

        1. Maybe it was him stomping around parc ferme after the race and and refusing to celebrate?

          Forget that. That was Max at the previous race wasn’t it.

          1. Suck it up, Ian.

            1. These are the kind of reactions that make me not want to comment on here as much anymore. It was probably a bit too provocative Ian, but at the same time Josh that response is not at all appropriate

            2. 10 day (grid drop) penalty for both

    8. Morons. Let’s announce bad news on the first day of the new season. Just drop a press release on Valentine’s Day and be done with it.
      Either they announce nothing was done wrong which will make people angry or they announce they screwed up and people will be angry. It is a lose lose. Just rip that bandaid off and move on.

    9. The stuff about him from Toto about considering his future? The way he unfollowed everyone on social media? The deafening silence?

      I suppose if it’s made him and his diva ego go away then I can’t complain.

      1. So essentially you dislike him for

        1. Something SOMEOME ELSE said about him?

        2. Unfollowing everyone and removing himself from social media after an insane amount of negativity and racist abuse.

        3. Because he’s silent durning the off season. How many drivers are doing interviews right now?

        Clutching at straws much

    10. I would like to know how they construe the article giving the RD, as it’s been argued, complete control over safety car procedures. Because that’s kind of the crux of his “defense” for inventing a new restart procedure. It was like a soccer ref deciding a corner kick should be a PK and offering no rationale.

    11. Maybe couldn’t get the Netflix team over before then to film it happening.

      1. Bazinga Liberty, nice one @neilosjames

    12. if at any circumstances the race can be ended racing, we race. Decision up to the racedirector. But first we ask Mercedes and Hamilton.

    13. So… what are we to expect from the conclusion of this investigation? Masi isn’t race director anymore for 2022, tells a story in itself.

      In all honesty, I have no sympathy for F1 at the moment.

      And people thinking this is all Mercedes’ doing are sadly mistaken, yes they have been more vocal about it but several teams and drivers were screwed over.

      1. @icarby

        Masi isn’t race director anymore for 2022, tells a story in itself.

        It would, if it was true.

        1. @aapje – yup stand corrected, if I understood it right it looks like they have split responsibilities of his role… We’ll see…

    14. I wish I got paid to do my job two months late.

    15. It’s great that they are getting this “enquire/review” over an done with as quickly as possible.

      Hopefully it might bring a few recommendations to provide a bit more clarity for race situations moving forward, but, given the history of the FIA, I somehow doubt that there’ll be much in the way of outcomes.

      The one I’d like to see is the Race Director insulated from the team principals and team representatives so he/she can focus on the race and safety without having to deal with what he had to several times, and especially the last race, last season. It might play out great on TV for the “fans” and might be great for Netflix but it’s just not right that team principals and their sidekicks can be screaming at him while he’s trying to manage a critical incident in a race.

      To me that’s the most likely outcome – more FIA people added to Masi’s team so he can focus on a narrower set of duties and others can run interference with the team principals.

      All of this silly speculation about Mercedes and Hamilton demanding resignations etc is at best just a beat up, and at worst, just plain nasty.

    16. before eventually announcing their “final decisions” at the World Motor Sport Council in Bahrain on Friday 18th March, the day of first practice for the 2022 season opening Bahrain Grand Prix.

      So basically, nothing of significance will be changed for the 2022 season.
      If they were to recommend Masi be removed from the position due to bias, does anyone believe they’re really going to do that during a practice session of a race weekend?
      Even any significant changing of operation or procedure or regulation would be unable to take place.
      This just reeks of a continuation of their stance that we all misunderstand and Masi is infallible.

      1. This just reeks of a continuation of their stance that we all misunderstand and Masi is infallible.

        You mean, that the FIA maintains the right to run their own business/racing series the way they wish?
        Why shouldn’t they be allowed to do so? Because some outsiders don’t like it?

        1. You’re a D grade troll mr S.

          Because some outsiders don’t like it?

          Yes, that is the reason they are doing an investigation… /s

          1. That’s probably because I’m not trolling, Skip.

            Do the FIA not have the right (naturally self imposed, as owners and administrators – and explicitly agreed to through the participation of all contracted stakeholders) to run F1 their way?
            If not, then who does?
            Mercedes seems to be trying, as have Red Bull and Ferrari in recent years.

            The investigation isn’t for the FIA, its for Mercedes and some outsider anoraks who disagree with the FIA’s actions who’ve been making a bit too much noise for the FIA’s liking.
            And if/when this investigation finds nothing substantially wrong in their handling of the Abu Dhabi GP, it won’t be a cover up or conspiracy, it will just be the FIA doing exactly what I said.
            Choosing to run their series, their way.

            If you don’t get that last bit, then yes – you are misunderstanding – just as the FIA said before.

        2. Since when do FIA ‘own’ Formula 1? They get to regulate it through contractual agreements with the teams and Liberty. If they want to put on (and fund) their own show, good luck finding the cash. Not to say FIA’s role isn’t essential or that all teams participating (and Liberty) shouldn’t respect the fact that the sport needs a properly functioning and competitively independent governing body. But it’s precisely its competence and/or independence that has been called into question and it itself is investigating. Though self-investigating governing bodies hardly fill me with much faith in their self-honesty and transparency (see under ‘present UK government’ for example).

          1. Since when do FIA ‘own’ Formula 1?

            Since when didn’t they?

            Liberty has commercial rights, but that’s not what I’m talking about.

            1. The point is Mercedes (and other teams or indeed Liberty) aren’t ‘some outsiders’, as you implied.

    17. Slightly disappointed at a couple of the timescales here. Have no problem with the February report, but leaving the decisions until the first weekend seems a bit late. That said, it’s not unheard of, wasn’t the fastest lap point only approved a couple of days before Australia 2019? I expect (well more hope really) any decisions that have been made would have been made a bit earlier on, and are only set to be publicly announced in March. But I’m not familiar with the WMSC procedure so I don’t know exactly how it would work.

    18. Its very simple, clear rules and procedure were not followed, you cant just arbitrarily add 10 seconds to Max to finish a qualifying to make it exciting. The problem is the majority white F1 world know this is about discrimination and a hint of Racism. suddenly everyone is in political correct mode overdrive,they are all acting like some strange mysterious event occurred that no one really understand.no Massi Brazenly broke the rule to advantage Max end of story

      1. @spactus

        The problem is the majority white F1 world know this is about discrimination and a hint of Racism.

        No, most of us are too sane to believe this.

    19. Very few of the comments here seem to appreciate the real reasons behind the decision to release the findings on March 18th, only two days before the racing begins.

      1) Hamilton was waiting to hear the results of the inquiry before making a decision to continue racing or not. This date forces him to decide first. The FIA probably expects him to enter, after which they can safely release a report largely exonerating themselves for the safety car decision, without risk of losing the current biggest name in the sport.

      2) With only two days before racing starts, they will be able to easily bury any outrage under pre-race hype, even more so once the racing actually begins.

    20. Again, clearly another instance of a no-brainer decision to ban unlapping cars – problem solved. If a car is lapped, therefore only doing 56 laps in a 57 lap race, so be it.

      Have no particular sway for VER or HAM, but in this instance the Safety Car was employed when HAM, under normal racing conditions had just negotiated a fairly close gaggle of cars and VER was about to do the same.

      Why should any driver [this case VER] be allowed to kick a free goal, with the cars between them being removed? Should not the emphasis be on having conditions as close as possible prior to the Safety Car? HAM had to negotiate them, so why shouldn’t VER, particularly where the conditions of both vehicles are not equal, eg. tyres. Also if the unlapping debacle is scrapped, the return to racing is sooner.

      1. @ancient1 had Verstappen passed 5 lapped cars and then Hamilton on that last lap then there would have been no complaints as the safety car procedures would have been applied at least according to the rules. It might still have hurt for Mercedes and Hamilton but they wouldn’t have been cheated. Unfortunately though it’s doubtful the FIA will ever admit any fault in this or any other matter. There entire penalty and appeals system is skewed to always favour them being able to railroad any penalty.

      2. Because F1 is entertainment, @ancient1.
        A lot of racing series do this with SC periods now.
        Perhaps ironically, they do it partly for the ‘purity of the competition’ – getting anyone who might hinder or interfere with the battle out of the way.

        Can I assume that if you don’t want lapped cars mixed in with the leaders given a lap back under SC, you’d also happily have blue flags removed too?
        Revert them to a friendly “There’s a faster car behind you, just so you know” instead of F1’s current use of “Give up your position and ruin your own race immediately, or be penalised.”

      3. @ancient1

        Should not the emphasis be on having conditions as close as possible prior to the Safety Car?

        But that’s not what happens anyway, because the safety car bunches up the back markers as well. This means that these cars can suddenly race each other, where they would otherwise often not be able to do so.

        Overtaking back markers that are bunched up and/or racing each other is both more difficult and dangerous than overtaking them if they are further apart.

        Also if the unlapping debacle is scrapped, the return to racing is sooner.

        I prefer if they drop the back markers back. This can be done during the safety car, so with no impact on the length of the SC.

    21. I’m not going to speculate on the outcome, but I can say with a fair degree of confidence. The decision to announce the results of the inquiry just a few weeks before the first GP. Shows Liberty media want as many fans as possible to chat, argue, and fight over the rehashing and dragging out of the Masi incident.
      It is all about building the drama and launching the new season with controversy to drive up ratings. It also shows the FIA is under the control of the commercial rights holder more than at any other time in the history of the sport.

    22. I have never been so disappointed in a season since the FIA disadvantaged Senna. Changes are needed to stop all of this turning into a circus rather than a sport. I have zero hope however ever since Netflix made their entrance. It shows clearly where the owners and FIA want to go. Utterly useless people at both Liberty and FIA. That notwithstanding Max a fully deserved WDC. Lewis gave it all away in panic at Silverstone, set the tone and really can’t complain. His hypocrisy caught up with him. So while the eventual outcome was way overdue it doesnt change the fact that the Liberty FIA combination is highly toxic for those expecting to see a sport. Such a loss for the sporting world.

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