F1 Academy managing director Susie Wolff has criticised the FIA’s handling of an investigation she was implicated in, claiming she is the victim of a campaign of misinformation.Formula 1 team principal and a member of Formula One Management. Reports elsewhere, often citing the same unbylined magazine article, identified Wolff and Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff, her husband, as the individuals in question.
After all Mercedes’ rival teams issued statements saying they had raised no concerns with the FIA, the governing body confirmed its investigation had concluded with no action being taken. However the F1 Academy chief, who previously called the accusations “baseless” and “rooted in intimidatory and misogynistic behaviour”, is unhappy with how the FIA has handled the case and revealed she has had no direct contact with them about it.
“When I saw the statement issued by the FIA yesterday evening, my first reaction was: ‘Is that it?'” said Wolff in a social media post.
“For two days, insinuations have been made about my integrity in public and through background briefings, but nobody from the FIA has spoken to me directly.”
She suggested the investigation may have been triggered in an attempt to discredit her husband.
“I might have been collateral damage in an unsuccessful attack on somebody else, or the target of a failed attempt to discredit me personally, but I have worked too hard to have my reputation called into question by an unfounded press release.”
Wolff expressed her gratitude to the nine F1 teams who expressed their support after the news of the FIA’s investigation emerged, and said those responsible for the how the investigation was handled and made public should be held accountable.
“We have come a long way as a sport. I was extremely thankful for the unified support of the Formula 1 teams. I have worked with so many passionate women and men at F1 and the FIA, who have the very best interests of our sport at heart.
“However, this episode has so far taken place without transparency or accountability. I have received online abuse about my work and my family. I will not allow myself to be intimidated and intend to follow up until I have found out who has instigated this campaign and misled the media.
“What happened this week is simply not good enough. As a sport, we must demand, and we deserve, better.”
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