Formula 1: Michael Masi could face the sack over Hamilton & Verstappen drama in Abu Dhabi

verstappen hamilton masi

Michael Masi could be removed as the FIA’s Formula 1 Race Director as part of their review into the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix back in December.

The 2022 season is just around the corner now with winter testing to take place in February before the campaign proper kicks off in Bahrain in March, but the events of 2021’s finale are still very much dominating the headlines in this off-period.

Indeed, there’s sustained speculation that Lewis Hamilton may not even compete this year such is his disillusionment with how last season ended, whilst Mercedes have been pushing hard for a thorough investigation into how events played out, with the FIA confirming that they would reveal any findings before the 2022 campaign gets underway.

What the result of their investigation is remains to be seen but BBC Sport is reporting that Michael Masi could well face the loss of his job as Race Director, with head of single-seater technical matters Nikolas Tombazis also leaving his particular role.

The Beeb claims that a senior source has informed them that Mercedes dropped their appeal against the results of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, after ‘agreeing a quid pro quo with the FIA.’

In this deal, the terms were that both Masi and Tombazis would not be in their positions for the new season, though nothing has been confirmed as official just yet.

Mercedes have denied any deal of that nature was struck, but the Silver Arrows did of course drop their appeal over the result and they have said that they did so because they were given assurances the FIA would take appropriate action after conducting a thorough investigation.

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What comes of all this is still to be discovered, then, but it does appear for the first time that Masi could be removed as Race Director, with this report obviously putting that idea on the table.

Indeed, the BBC go on to reveal that they have been told by ‘senior figures’ that they do not see how Masi can retain his position in the aftermath of Abu Dhabi, but that the FIA finds itself in ‘a difficult position’ as there is currently no obvious replacement for him.

That, though, might not particularly wash with Mercedes who have been pretty clear with their stance in wanting a total review of the final few laps of the Yas Marina Circuit.

The hope for the sport, meanwhile, has to be that a decisive outcome is reached and then we can all try and move forwards.

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