FIA investigation: Martin Brundle offers take on Michael Masi and potential replacement plans

martin brundle

Sky Sports pundit and former Formula 1 driver Martin Brundle has said that people need to ‘be careful what they wish for,’ over the potential exit of Michael Masi from his Race Director role ahead of the new season.

The 2022 campaign gets underway in Bahrain in mid-March and before then we’ve got a February schedule full of car launches, whilst pre-season testing will soon follow that.

Indeed, it’s an exciting period as we look forward to seeing how the new regulations have been interpreted by all 10 teams, but we do still have this cloud over the sport that was generated by the climax to the 2021 championship.

Indeed, the FIA investigation into the closing stages of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix has begun but the findings of that will not be revealed until the first race weekend in Sakhir, and it remains to be seen what outcomes after the publication are produced.

One pretty firm suggestion has been that Michael Masi will be removed from his role as Race Director and replaced, but Brundle feels as though whilst the Australian’s position may well be untenable for the new season, simply replacing him with one other person isn’t going to fix the problem.

Speaking to Sky Sports, he explained:

“If the FIA and F1 want Michael Masi to stay, and if Michael Masi wants to stay, he’s clearly only got one life left, hasn’t he? So I don’t know if that’s tenable all round.

“Who would you replace him with? Be careful what you wish for, I would say in this. What I absolutely know for sure is that changing Michael Masi will not fix the problem.

“This is way too big a job for one person to handle in a 23-race season [and] it’s only going to grow – we’re all over the world.

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“Back in the day it was 16, 18 races for Charlie [Whiting, ex-race director] and Herbie [Blash, ex-deputy race director].

“Charlie used to start the race and Herbie was effectively the race director until Charlie got back from the starting rostrum down near the grid.

“They had it all under control, but it’s just growing exponentially. So Masi, if he stays, needs a lot of support around him, and I suspect that’s what they’re looking at, at the moment. And who would actually want to step into his shoes right now?”

Clearly, decisions need to be made but as yet we appear no closer to really knowing what the set-up is going to be for 2022.

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