Mercedes boss Toto Wolff denies Lewis Hamilton demanded Michael Masi’s departure to stay in F1

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff denies Lewis Hamilton demanded Michael Masi’s departure to stay in F1


Wolff on Hamilton’s future: “I have known Lewis for such a long time and I wasn’t [concerned about him quitting], but obviously this [finish to the 2021 season in Abu Dhabi] has had such an impact on him.”

Last Updated: 18/02/22 9:26am

Lewis Hamilton is set to remain with Mercedes in 2022

Lewis Hamilton is ready to stay with Mercedes in 2022

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has insisted that Michael Masi’s departure as race director was not a think about Lewis Hamilton staying in F1.

Hamilton confirmed at Mercedes’ automobile launch on Friday that he could be racing in 2022, saying: “I never, ever said I was going to stop”.

The FIA has changed Masi as F1 race director following a assessment into final yr’s season-ending Abu Dhabi GP, the place the Italian’s dealing with of the Safety Car choices within the race had been questioned.

Hamilton was denied a history-making eighth world title, as Max Verstappen handed him on the ultimate lap to assert a controversial race win and title, with Wolff beforehand describing the Brit’s ‘disillusionment’ about the best way the 2021 season completed.

Johnny Herbert, Damon Hill and Martin Brundle debate whether the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was manipulated and whether the ending was the greatest sporting injustice of all time.

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Johnny Herbert, Damon Hill and Martin Brundle debate whether or not the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was manipulated and whether or not the ending was the best sporting injustice of all time.

Johnny Herbert, Damon Hill and Martin Brundle debate whether or not the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was manipulated and whether or not the ending was the best sporting injustice of all time.

But on Friday Wolff mentioned he was at all times assured that the 37-year-old would return.

When requested whether or not Masi’s removing was a situation for Hamilton staying within the sport, Wolff informed BBC 5Live: “No, absolutely not. I think it was for Lewis himself to decide how can I digest the events from Abu Dhabi and the same for the team, and I think we moved on.

FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem announces that Michael Masi has been removed as F1 race director amongst a string of other changes .

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FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem announces that Michael Masi has been removed as F1 race director amongst a string of other changes .

FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem announces that Michael Masi has been removed as F1 race director amongst a string of other changes .

“It’s up to now. It’s not one thing that we’ll, in a manner, get well, but it surely wasn’t a situation.

I have known Lewis for such a long time and I wasn’t [concerned about him quitting], but obviously this has had such an impact on him. When everything you do is about fairness and justice and then that happens to you, it is quite difficult, I understand, to cope with that.”

Did F1 lose credibility in Abu Dhabi?

Sky Sports Formula One reporter Craig Slater explains the departure of Michael Masi as race director and what it means heading into the new season.

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Sky Sports Formula One reporter Craig Slater explains the departure of Michael Masi as race director and what it means heading into the brand new season.

Sky Sports Formula One reporter Craig Slater explains the departure of Michael Masi as race director and what it means heading into the brand new season.

Masi ordered solely the lapped vehicles between Hamilton and second-placed Verstappen by way of throughout the dramatic Safety Car within the 2021 decider, offering the Dutchman, on contemporary tyres, a shot at passing Hamilton – who was on outdated rubber.

While Masi’s actions had been justified by the FIA stewards following a Mercedes group enchantment, F1’s governing physique lodged a full assessment into the method and admitted the game’s picture was being tarnished.

“The team bosses and the sporting directors hammering on the race director isn’t something that’s helpful,” Wolff added. “That was determined a number of years in the past, to offer the followers extra perception of what was happening. but it surely wasn’t good in the long run.

Sky F1's Martin Brundle says teams should not be able to lobby a race director while critical decisions are being made, following the controversial Abu Dhabi season finale.

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Sky F1’s Martin Brundle says teams should not be able to lobby a race director while critical decisions are being made, following the controversial Abu Dhabi season finale.

Sky F1’s Martin Brundle says teams should not be able to lobby a race director while critical decisions are being made, following the controversial Abu Dhabi season finale.

You can see in a manner the distrust to the race director in that state of affairs, as a result of I feared he would name a security automobile simply to bunch the sphere up and restart the race after that incident and it wasn’t proper to name the security automobile.

“All that was triggered by the past events and it clearly wasn’t right. In the end, the exchanges between the Red Bull team and the race director wasn’t okay, but it is what is. It doesn’t bring the Championship trophy back to us or to Lewis.”

Formula 1 expert Karun Chandhok says former race director Michael Masi made a mistake in Abu Dhabi but believes the system did not help with the situation either.

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Formula 1 professional Karun Chandhok says former race director Michael Masi made a mistake in Abu Dhabi however believes the system didn’t assist with the state of affairs both.

Formula 1 professional Karun Chandhok says former race director Michael Masi made a mistake in Abu Dhabi however believes the system didn’t assist with the state of affairs both.

‘Time to maneuver ahead’

Mercedes revealed their new W13 automobile for the 2022 season on Friday and Hamilton joined compatriot George Russell for the launch at Silverstone, with Wolff now hoping to see the game transfer on from Abu Dhabi and deal with the yr forward.

“The reason why I’m in the sport and our team is the honesty of the stopwatch,” Wolff added. “You know whether you’re good enough or not and, on that day, Lewis was the best driver and the team performed.

“If that is taken away, you type of query the integrity, however as a matter of truth I believe we have to transfer on.

“The sport had a fantastic season last season with a great battle at the front and the audiences are great. Polarisation is sometimes good for the sport but now it’s about stopping discussion about Abu Dhabi and moving forward.”





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