The FIA’s investigation into Formula One’s decision-making for 2021 is accelerating

Formula 1 F1 – Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – 12 December 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen crosses the line to win the race and the World Pool Championship via REUTERS / Kamran Jebreili

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LONDON, Jan 12 (Reuters) – A Formula One governing body investigation into last season’s Abu Dhabi final is accelerating amid speculation that the outcome will determine whether seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton will race or leave.

The International Automobile Federation (FIA) promised in December a “detailed analysis and clarification of the controversy it admitted to damaging the image of the championship.” Read more

He was said to discuss what happened to all teams and drivers and come to a conclusion before the start of the season in March.

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A FIA spokesman said on Wednesday that the investigation was led by Peter Bayer, the general secretary of motorsport based in Geneva, and that it would be ‘thorough, objective and transparent’.

The process began after the last meeting of the World Motorsport Council on December 15, two days before Emirati Mohammed Ben Sulayem was elected FIA president, and became more active last week.

Formula One race director Michael Masi, an FIA official at the center of the storm, has sounded the alarm after a late change in safety car procedure favored Red Bull Max Verstappen. Read more

Verstappen then managed to pass Hamilton in the final lap to win the race and his first title, denying the Mercedes driver a record eighth place.

Mercedes, which believed Hamilton had been robbed, withdrew the threat of an appeal after an FIA investigation was announced, but warned that it would call the governing body to account and that actions as well as words should be seen.

Some consider Massey’s position unsustainable, but there is also no clear replacement for the Australian.

Hamilton has a contract until the end of 2023, but there has been a lot of speculation in the media that he could announce a day if the FIA ​​does not come out with an adequate response.

The Briton, who turned 37 this month, has been avoiding social media and has avoided any public comment since the December 12 race. Read more

He said on team radio during the race that “this has been manipulated”. Read more

The next meeting of the World Motorsport Council is scheduled for February 3 in Paris, but any report must first be considered by a Formula 1 commission and a sports advisory committee.

Testing begins in Spain on February 23, and the starting race in Bahrain on March 20.

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Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Pritha Sarkar

Our standards: Principles of trust of Thomson Reuters.


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