Lewis Hamilton, Max Verstappen, Yas Marina, 2021

Mercedes will not appeal Abu Dhabi GP result, Verstappen to be confirmed as champion

2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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Mercedes have announced they will not proceed with an appeal over the outcome of Sunday’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, meaning Max Verstappen’s confirmation as world champion is no longer in jeopardy.

The team lodged two protests immediately after Sunday’s race following the controversial late restart after which Verstappen overtook Lewis Hamilton to win the race and clinch the title. FIA F1 race director Michael Masi took a contentious decision to remove lapped cars ahead of Verstappen but not behind him, giving the Red Bull driver a clear run at Hamilton on the final lap of the season.

The stewards rejected both Mercedes protests. However the team swiftly gave the FIA notice it intended to appeal one of the rejected protests concerning the handling of the restart. The result of Sunday’s race was therefore listed as being subject to an appeal when they were issued.

Having waited until the final day of the 96-hour window in which it had to make a decision, Mercedes has opted nor to appeal. Verstappen can therefore be confirmed as champion and awarded his trophy in the official FIAprize giving ceremony which is due to take place today.

In a statement announcing its decision not to appeal, Mercedes said it had been left in “disbelief” by the events of last weekend’s race. They believe the Safety Car rules “were applied in a new way that affected the race result”.

The FIA yesterday issued a statement yesterday acknowledging the race had “generated significant misunderstanding and reactions from Formula 1 teams, drivers and fans” and “an argument that is currently tarnishing the image of the championship.” It said it would begin a “detailed analysis and clarification exercise for the future.”

Mercedes said they “welcome the decision by the FIA to install a commission to thoroughly analyse what happened in Abu Dhabi and to improve the robustness of rules, governance and decision making in Formula 1.” It vowed to “hold the FIA accountable for this process.”

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Mercedes statement in full

Dear Formula 1 community and fans,

We left Abu Dhabi in disbelief of what we had just witnessed. Of course, it’s part of the game to lose a race, but it’s something different when you lose faith in racing.

Together with Lewis, we have deliberated carefully over how to respond to the events at the Formula 1 season finale. We have always been guided by our love of this sport and we believe that every competition should be won on merit. In the race on Sunday many felt, us included, that the way things unfolded was not right.

The reason we protested the race result on Sunday was because the Safety Car regulations were applied in a new way that affected the race result, after Lewis had been in a commanding lead and on course to win the world championship.

We appealed in the interest of sporting fairness, and we have since been in a constructive dialogue with the FIA and Formula 1 to create clarity for the future, so that all competitors know the rules under which they are racing, and how they will be enforced. Thus, we welcome the decision by the FIA to install a commission to thoroughly analyse what happened in Abu Dhabi and to improve the robustness of rules, governance and decision making in Formula 1. We also welcome that they have invited the teams and drivers to take part.

The Mercedes-AMG Petronas team will actively work with this commission to build a better Formula 1 – for every team and every fan who loves this sport as much as we do. We will hold the FIA accountable for this process and we hereby withdraw our appeal.

To Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing: we would like to express our sincere respect for your achievements this season. You made this Formula 1 championship title fight truly epic. Max, we congratulate you and your entire team. We look forward to taking the fight to you on the track next season.

And lastly, even though this drivers’ championship did not end the way we hoped, we could not be prouder of our team.

Lewis, you are the greatest racer in the history of Formula 1 and you drove your heart out for every lap of this incredible season. You’re a flawless sportsman on and off the track and you delivered a faultless performance. As a pure competitor and as a role model for millions around the world, we salute you.

Valtteri, you have been such an important part of this team, delivering five constructors’ championships in five seasons. Thank you for your remarkable contribution to our motorsport history. Kiitos, Valtteri.

Finally, to every one of the skilled and passionate women and men of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team in Brackley and High Performance Powertrains in Brixworth: you’ve written an historic chapter in the Silver Arrow story by winning the eighth constructors’ championship – in a row. This is an unprecedented achievement. In simple words: it’s awesome. You are awesome.

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2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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215 comments on “Mercedes will not appeal Abu Dhabi GP result, Verstappen to be confirmed as champion”

  1. Expected, really. But they should, as everyone else in F1, keep pushing for clarification.

    1. The clarification is that the officials can do no wrong.

      1. They wouldn’t have supported the FIA commission if they believed that’s what they’re gonna find.

        1. Nope, you can already see the difference in language between Mercedes and FIA.

          to improve the robustness of rules, governance and decision making in Formula 1

          FIA mentioned nothing of the sort, simply a clarification that we are wrong and all was right.

          I’ll eat my hat if the report comes to Mercedes’ conclusion.

          1. Fia kangaroo court. Obviously they will find no wrong in there actions. Look at the statement. It read like it was the fans fault for not understanding.

    2. petebaldwin (@)
      16th December 2021, 10:18

      I would love to know what’s actually been agreed behind the scenes as I’m guessing there was a fairly strict list of demands the FIA would have to agree to before Mercedes were willing to drop their appeal.

      1. That Mercedes ever had the upper hand in negotiations is an assumption.

        1. Agreed. Merc had no case to change the result, that’s obvious to anyone who looked at the Sporting Code.

          1. Except it really isn’t obvious, and yes I’ve looked at the sporting regulations. I think that was the point Alan but anyways it doesn’t matter.

          2. Nice try, but someone did respond with a good counter.

            Either way, I will not recognise Max as the champion for 2021. Should Lewis fail to win any more championships, Max will need 9 to overtake in my book.

          3. Max will need 9 to overtake in my book

            Still harder to beat Alonso’s ten WDCs and Schumacher’s twelve (in f1metrics book). Comparatively, beating Hamilton’s or Vettel’s two is a piece of cake.

            Well, in fact Max may have beaten them already. Max was the 2019 fimetrics wdc. The 2020 and 2021 results have not been posted but I would not be surprised if Max won them both.

        2. petebaldwin (@)
          16th December 2021, 10:50

          @skipgamer – If they had appealed, it would be a huge embarrassment for the FIA who would be unable to crown Max as champion tonight. They could have appealed and then gone further to seek financial compensation afterwards as well. The FIA admitted in their statement that all of this was doing damage to F1.

          I don’t think Mercedes would have won an appeal but it was massively in the FIA’s interest to keep this out of the courts.

          1. ” If they had appealed, it would be a huge embarrassment for the FIA ”

            F1 is a franchised entity, not a massive sport like football etc… Merc embarrassing the FIA devalues their OWN brand. The FIA know this as do Merc so that was never going to happen, especially when Merc will know they had zero chance of changing the result of the championship.

          2. By the same token the FIA could have taken the stance of “You know that such a decision could have benefited you just as much as it could have benefited Red Bull, go ahead with your protest but you know it will drag your name through the mud worse than ours.” released their statement and now Mercedes are saving face making it look like they forced FIA’s hand.

            I’m not saying that’s the way it went but to say that Mercedes somehow have had any kind of opportunity to make demands is just as feasible.

      2. @petebaldwin Also Toto doesn’t want to burn the bridges with Verstappen. Have you seen the latest interview by Nico Rosberg? He doesn’t seem to have given up having him at Mercedes one day.

        1. @cobray interesting and valid perspective

        2. @cobray what interview is that?

          1. @hahostolze


            From 31:00 onwards. I meant the latest interview he did ‘with’ Nico Rosberg. Not Toto’s latest interview. Sorry for the confusion.

        3. If RB doesn’t produce the goods next year Max will be banging on Mercedes door. To think otherwise is naive.

          1. That of course assumes that Merc are top performers rather than Ferrari, McLaren, Alpine or Aston etc….
            Total unknown who is going to nail the new aero regs. If you had to back anyone though it’d be RB or Merc, but nothing guaranteed.
            Also I expect Wolff will move on Not long after Ham decides to hang up his suit so may not be him hunting his replacement if it’s end of season. Also assumes Russel isn’t good enough to be defacto no.1 and they don’t just take a promising rookie or someone else on the grid wanting an opportunity but far cheaper than Verstappen eg gasly

      3. Dropping an appeal and get a commission as result…
        Not sure if you ever played poker, but this means you lost big time.
        Bluffed and get called and showed a meagre hand.

        1. “Lost big time.”
          As always, Erikje a big fan of Mercedes. Thanks for your amusing comments once again. I think Hamilton didn’t want to win a title like this, but of course I presume that viewpoint you don’t agree with and instead it was a bluff all along.

          1. @john-h You shouldn’t bother replying, I have never seen someone who is so blinded by their hatred that they could never be impartial.

            What happened on the weekend was a big scandal and its residual effects are longer lasting and even worse.

            Susie Wolff’s criticism is spot on: https://twitter.com/Susie_Wolff/status/1471400042527346689/photo/1

            But here are some things to consider.

            1. The FIA’s response to Mercedes initial complaint was inadequate and wrong, the ability for the RD to override is in fact related to the Clerk of the Course’s decision to deployment and return of the safety and not the rules. The Rules state two things, that is; All cars that have been lapped must unlap themselves (or all cars don’t) and that only after this the safety car comes in on the next lap. Masi has made statements earlier and in other races that he is fully aware of this.

            2. Masi should be asked why he decided that only some cars should unlap themselves, did he consider other participants in the race? Was it a safety concern, surely any safety concern would in fact mean extending the safety car period not truncating its deployment ? I think he would find it hard to give an appropriate answer because not all cars were permitted to race in fact only two were, that displays an extreme bias. Can there ever be any genuine reason for only some cars to unlap themselves ?

            3. The safety car was probably brought in prematurely and for the spectacle of ‘racing’ he took a great risk with drivers safety.

            4. Whether you like LH or not (with all the spurious claims of living in a tax haven, virtue signaller, eco-warrior etc. – curiously all other drivers are free of fault according to some) the world has been deprived of probably the greatest achievement in motorsport, F1. The first eight time world champion it may be unsurpassed and if that is the case that will make it even worse. If he doesn’t reach eight titles it will be a travesty and if he does then rightfully he should have one more than whatever final figure that is!

            5. It would be very difficult to remedy Masi’s decision, annulling the race would not have the desired affect. Nor would it be possible to just give LH the title. Although I could see one legal argument; that is to determine lap 58 will not count as a racing lap as it was not under proper racing conditions.

            6. It is also damning that after announcing that no car will unlap themselves he changed his mind/direction and allowed them to do so and immediately brought the safety car in. This happened after Red Bull asked for just one lap; surely a race diecrtor should not be influenced in such a manner. Granted Toto Wolff made a plea, but in his defence I think he was thinnking of the last race were after a few laps under the safety car a red flag was deployed and many perceived that as unnecessary and it handed track position to none other than ?

            6. Had the decision been changed in an appeal, I have every confidence that Lewis wouldn’t want it that way as he wants to win ‘the right way’, making a very bad and wrong decision lasting.

            The whole thing stinks and it leaves a very bitter taste in my mouth. However much of an anticlimax it was, finishing under the safety car was about the only option there was that would be in accordance with the rules.

            You cannot change rules mid-race even if that does enhance the spectacle

      4. @petebaldwin
        I think it’s more about the power the FIA have on the technical regulations that no one dares to publicly challenge them outside of their institutions. From what I have observed through the history of teams disputes with the FIA over the years as the casual fan I’m, I have expected that Mercedes will yield and will not play ball with the FIA.

        The FIA can nullify any advantage they have with a simple technical directive and this year for example they could have lost the championship earlier if for example if the FIA have agreed with RBR who lobbied hard to get Mercedes targeted with regard to their PU (intercooler), front wing, rear suspension setup, rear wing…

        Even Ferrari with their mighty political power behind the scenes – you just have to look at the names of their board of directors to realize how much of a politicized company they are – were severely punished by the FIA when they were caught and despite the fact that from a legal standpoint the FIA didn’t have proof to prove that Ferrari were bypassing their fuel-flow meter.

        Some might argue that the settlement was a joke but in fact the FIA was able to negate Ferrari’s power advantage and compromise their next 2 seasons – as per Binotto admission in 2020 that for them to develop a new PU they need at least 2 years – without having a single element to prove what they were doing.

        Wolff as the megalomaniac he is was carried by the events and though he can play politics with someone like Jean Todt. The only thing he will get from this is a slap on the face and an implicit warning not challenge the FIA like he did in the future.

    3. I’d think that given the exact way both the FIA statement and the Mercedes statement were formulated @fer-no65, @skipgamer, @hunocsi, that the F1 team, but more importantly the company itself will have told the FIA very clearly that things will HAVE to change for the company to be interested in F1 for the longer term.

      Also, given that Todt and his team are leading the FIA only until the end of this week, and a new FIA president and their team will be able to pick this up.
      So we might see that new president actually embracing some changes and present them as a positive “look, we are a new team, we have now clarified issues of the last bunch and are happy to reformulate a few bits for a better future together”.

    4. Expected but not good for the sport, IMHO. I never wanted the result changed, but Mercedes have just given up their strongest lever to force change. I will believe things will improve when I see it, now.

      1. Why would they want change? They win almost everything, and it’s great for ratings, which is what powers the teams. They also want to get Verstappen when Hamilton retires, so why ruin that chance.

  2. Good. Constructive rather than destructive. No matter what you think about what happened, this could only ever be the solution that actually benefitted the sport.

    1. F1 isnt a Sport.

      1. This is a conclusion more need to come to, and accept.

      2. Then why are you so upset? If it’s not a sport, but entertainment, then surely this was the perfect final race?

        1. GS (@gsagostinho)
          16th December 2021, 10:19

          I think he’s upset precisely because F1 has become less of a sport.

          1. @gsagostinho he says isn’t, not has stopped being.
            And I’d love to hear the moment it has become less of a sport. Was it in 1990 when a driver took out another at the first corner to settle the championship, or 1997 when the same was attempted? Was it the soul-detroying dominance of 1989, 2002, 2014? Was it the appeal of McLaren in 2007 after the title was lost, Crashgate in 2008? Was it the lottery of tyres in 2012, or the randomness under which Pirelli tyres would stop working all through the early noughties? Was it the tyre rule of 2005? Was it the political wars between FISA and FOCA in the 1980s? Was it Rosberg and Hamilton barging each other off at every turn in 2016? Was it double points at the final race in 2014? Was it the death of Senna, in part caused by the fact that he was fighting a clearly illegal Benetton and pushed his car too far? Was it the increasing television attention, streaming, was it Netflix? Was it Jacky Ickx going for a final race against a dead title rival? Was it Stirling Moss helping Mike Hawthorne win a title Moss deserved in 1958? Or, just maybe is everyone being a bit silly about how this has doomed F1 forever?

          2. I have finally realised that F1 hasnt been a sport for a very very long time, the actual moment is hard to say as it so subjective but after watching what can only be called a ‘made for TV’ ending to sundays race any semblance of a sport is not what F1 is.

          3. @hahostolze CotD!!! It’s more of the same, a part of why F1 is such a fascinating sport, nay, competition, to follow. Really, F1 transcends sport, to call it a sport is a belittling.

          4. Yes, at times there have been unsporting moments and incidents, but it has still been a competition overall. This year has seen a step change. It is the first time that it seems decisions are being made on the basis of prolonging the championship battle and giving the correct result from an entertainment perspective. It feels like this approach will affect every race in the near future. And judging by the FIA response, and just like with sprint races, there’s no going back. So, I’m not sure if I want to keep paying Sky to watch car-based entertainment when I can watch Top Gear for free.

          5. @hahostolze CotD
            The Netflix generation does not sees the past but only the present. They seem to think there was something new.

          6. And further to my point, what happened in DTM’s season finale (also between Mercedes and Red Bull!!) was far, far more farcical, unfair and detrimental to motorsport. But fewer people watched, so nobody cared.

          7. @hahostolze the examples you cite are the result of poor driving, cheating, manipulation on a teams part, changes in equipment, drivers choosing a specific path or unforseen circumstances out of officiating’s control, not the FIA making up the rules during a race.

            This is the first time I can think of that race control have directly affected the outcome because they interpreted the “desire to finish under green” as “must finish under green under any circumstance, regardless of fairness”. Any other option would have been fairer, regardless of legality under the rules (I don’t buy the red flag argument and would say that it wasn’t an option but it would certainly be fairer).

            In 1990 the FIA didn’t directly manipulate the result, other than ignore Senna’s (somewhat valid) request to have pole on the side of the track he wanted it to be on (i.e. the racing line, as it is for most races). He lost the lead on the drag race to turn 1 and took out Prost to make the point. I’ve seen the start hundreds of times but only last week did I watch the extended highlights and specifically the formation lap, where Murray Walker was talking about Senna’s request for some time prior to the race. Arguably the FIA were in the wrong, but less so that Senna was and the FIA choosing not to act after the race, or acquiesce to Senna’s request before, certainly wasn’t a direct attempt to change the result.

            Arguably the same goes for 1989 – the crash happened before the FIA decided to DQ Senna. That one is a bit more suspect (especially if you watch the Senna film, which while maybe not objective it still shows Ron Dennis highlight many drivers cutting chicanes without penalty) but again, a crash happened that needed to be investigated. Senna retired from the following race which may/may not have this academic.

            That’s the problem with Abu Dhabi – race control, through their own actions, changed the outcome of the event. That’s where it fails as a sporting contest. Yes Latifi’s crash triggered the situation, but unlike the other cases you’ve mentioned he wasn’t involved in the championship.

            Nothing changes for me. I won’t recognise Max as the 2021 championship.

        2. Who cares whether it’s a sport or not, F1 is entertainment loved by the millions!

      3. It might not always look like it on TV, but go to a race and watch the extraordinary skill of the men and women who go to the very edge – to the last millimetre with pinpoint accuracy again and again and again – and then you see that this is the ultimate sport.

        1. With drivers whose parents pay millions and buy teams to compete. Very sporting indeed.

          1. @skipgamer maybe I was born with the potential to be the best ever tennis player, or the best ever snowboarder, or flying suit diver, but guess what, my parents couldn’t pay millions either. Oh, you thought car racing is the only sport where you need to be a literal millionaire to thrive?

          2. O.o Sorry to inform you but, you don’t need to be a millionaire to play tennis at the club level and rise the ranks. Snowboarding is a bit more pricey but again, not millionaire level, there is local competitions and the olympic route with good results. Flying suit diver? I guess but I think most start that well after childhood with their own funds.

            car racing is the only sport where you need to be a literal millionaire to thrive?

            That wasn’t my argument, just that F1, not car racing, certainly has a lot of shortcuts for the rich, connected and DNA. It’s far from the olympics bar maybe equestrian.

            Hamilton is a great example of not having to be rich to enter, but Stroll is a great example of how being rich helps.

          3. Good point there @omarr-pepper. I know how much some families are putting into their kids doing stuff like Ice Hockey as hopefulls for a career. And it is a LOT (most all free time, the equipment, travel to training and games, training camps, some even moving just to get their kids to enter a high rated club program). And I know relatively simple football can have some of the same.

            Sure, motorsport (and things like sailing, etc) is probably even more expensive, but you are right that supporting any child into a (potential) career in sports is expensive, needs a commitment from family members as well as some sacrifices.

          4. @skipgamer

            “Sorry to inform you but, you don’t need to be a millionaire to play tennis at the club level and rise the ranks”

            While I agree that you dont have to be a “millionaire” to play tennis and rise, you certainly need to have a bit of cash. Tennis coaching is pretty expensive, and to get really good, you have to train many hours, with a top line coach. And thats just the start of it.

            When I was growing up, I always hoped to get private coaching, never had the chance due to costs, my parents couldnt afford a coach….let alone the fancy gear, which was a lot more expensive back then.

            Racing is another level of course, but a lot of sports, generally require a fair bit of upfront investment from families.

        2. A sport needs solid rules and officials which enforce them. The FIA have shown they are not willing to do so, and my reading of the statements is that they’ve offered a sop to Merc but don’t plan to do anything meaningful.

          I hope I am wrong, but I will believe that things will improve only when I see it now.

      4. Leonard ‘Big Lenny’ Persin (@)
        16th December 2021, 12:26

        Go watch F2 if you want to watch a sport.

        Imagine footballers having to score in a smaller net than their opposition, because the opposing team spent £200m more on their goal post technology 😂

        1. F1 is a technical competition as well as a driving competition, but the technical aspect is incredibly strictly regulated and everybody operates under the same rules.

          Even so, other competitions make use of technology and innovation where they can, too. Millions is spent on the design of golf clubs, tennis rackets, football boots, running shoes… Heck, even clothing for sports people involves massive amounts of R&D.

          Even with spec cars in F2, there is a massive amount of work involved in setup and tuning which benefits those with the deepest pockets.

          None of this makes it right for a race director to ignore or make up rules on the spot in the middle of a race, especially the title-deciding final race of the year.

  3. And thus the circus continues, wonder if all those who said it’s the end of F1 and they will turn off will carry through.

    Realistically, this has always been the way F1 is run. It’s not worth the cost to change.

    1. With what millions witnessed. Do you believe that was good for f1?

      A true f1 fan knows full well. That was f1 biggest embarrassment.

      1. Do you believe that was good for f1?

        If I was looking at social media engagement…

        Undoubtedly yes.

        1. It’s the argument of “any publicity is good publicity” vs “no publicity is bad publicity”. Which shouldn’t be the case.

          I’m very much on the fence on F1 but considering I’m now US based, I’ll probably stick to Indycar. It’s been far more interesting for at least the last decade.

      2. Millions witnessed the title decided on the last lap. Nothing better could have happened to F1. This will be an enormous boost.

        The very few people, who are so invested in the minutiae of safety car rules, and will stop watching over this are so few that they will not make the slightest dent in the viewing figures.

        1. Millions witnessed the title decided by the race director on the second-to-last lap.


        2. Even if it had been a fair fight, 2008 still tops it for me. Mainly because Lewis only moved into championship winning position after Massa had crossed the line. But also because there weren’t as many races. 22 is too many as it is, I think I’ve watched maybe 3 races live this year vs 12-15 through the 90s.

      3. Wrong. Deliberately crashing your car was a much bigger embarassement. That also contributed to the outcome of a world championship. (Singapore 2008…) Even more embarassing is the fact that race counted towards the championship. Alonso has one more win due to that race. A cheated race.

        Leaving 5 lapped cars between Hamilton and Verstappen would have been as unjust as the solution they came up with.

        1. Not really. It would not have been fair, but at least it would be following an established procedure laid out in the same rules as applied in every other race this season. It wouldn’t have been exactly fair, but much better than throwing the rulebook out and inventing something new on the spot.

  4. Finally.

    Sanity prevails.

    1. Andy (@andyfromsandy)
      16th December 2021, 10:25

      When the FIA claim there is significant misunderstandings what do you think they mean?

      1. Particularly when they say that there were misunderstandings only by the drivers and fans. That doesn’t give me any hope that anything will improve.

      2. petebaldwin (@)
        16th December 2021, 10:39

        The definition of “misunderstanding” can be either “a failure to understand something correctly” or “a disagreement or quarrel.”

        There is certainly significant disagreement so perhaps that’s what they mean? Otherwise, we already know that they believe they followed the rules – that’s why they rejected Mercedes’ appeal on Sunday. Bearing that in mind, I suppose it follows that they would feel people don’t understand the rules correctly as to many, what they did was illegal.

        This is why things need to be clarified and it needs to be decided if people are happy to carry on with the rules as they are or whether they need reformulating.

        1. What hasn’t been addressed is that even if this was legal (and I still strongly disagree with that interpretation of 15.3), it certainly wasn’t sporting or fair to deviate from established procedures in a way which significantly favoured one driver, and it also isn’t right for the race director to have such absolute and unrestrained power.

          1. petebaldwin (@)
            16th December 2021, 11:18

            @drmouse – Totally agree. I hope this is something that is changed for 2022. F1 desperately needs to get away from “concepts” that seem to be applied to it’s rules. The rules should be written plainly and should be measurable. If you want to “let them race” then this must be incorporated in the rules. If you want every race to finish under a green flag, this must be driven by the rules…

            I want to see the scope for decisions to be made by the race directly massively reduced – his decisions should purely be on the grounds of safety. The rest should just be spelled out in the rules. If they want races to finish under green flags then what happens? Does the race get red flagged with 3 laps remaining every time if the track isn’t clear? Do they want lapped cars out of the way if we’re behind a safety car? If so, this should be done every time and it should be documented exactly when they are allowed to overtake.

            The other key thing is that whilst there is clearly a major issue with how this race ended, they need to not get tunnel vision and only look at the safety car process. There are major issues across many of rules for F1. It almost needs them to do a “ctrl+f” and search for “discretion” and wherever that word appears, look to put a solid rule in place that can be followed 100% of the time…

          2. @petebaldwin That would be amazing, will be interesting to see if the work is done to make it happen. I feel the competition benefits too much from controversy and having a story to tell.

          3. @skipgamer I agree, that would be amazing to see, and I hope it (or at least something close) happens. Looking at the FIA statement, though, I cannot see it happening. If anything changes, I expect it to be a clarification to everyone that the race director can do anything he wants. I hope to be proved wrong.

  5. BW (@deliberator)
    16th December 2021, 10:07

    Chances of success would be approximately 0% and chances of disgracing themselves a certain 100%, irrespective of the outcome. So, a sensible decision in the end, only four days late.

    1. Exactly, after four days of trying to find a way to change the outcome, the only somewhat sensible possibility would have resulted in the annulment of the event, leaving Verstappen the champion regardless. And as the protest against the safety car “overtake” showed, never mind Mercedes’ own use of Bottas to back up the field at the previous race, this was never about the rules and always and only about trying to change the outcome of the WDC.

      The FIA, like all international political organisations, solved it by creating a commission. They will have a report, everyone will get to have their say, and in four months time F1 will be back to racing.

  6. Moving all of my support to Mclaren. Hopefully Mercedes fail from now on. I simply can’t support a team without a backbone.

    1. BW (@deliberator)
      16th December 2021, 10:10

      Does Red Bull not have a backbone?

        1. BW (@deliberator)
          16th December 2021, 10:25

          I’d say that an energy drink company that has managed to take in the might if Mercedes, Ferrari and McLaren to name a few, and prevail has a backbone. Do they have one for a protest? I guess we’ll never know 😃

          1. I think they would have the guts for a protest, purely opportunistic to get the best out of it @deliberator. Look at the money behind the Red Bull drinks and media/sports world, they have quite a bit of might behind them theirselves, if not manufacturing might.

          2. Andy (@andyfromsandy)
            16th December 2021, 11:36

            Just like being the POTUS it only takes the one with the biggest pot of money apparently.

            It doesn’t matter what your roots are you just need lots and lots of money.

  7. Callitasuseeit
    16th December 2021, 10:15

    this is from a slightly biased person. Nobody could be absolutely unbiased.
    Can no one remember that BOTH drivers have benefited from Safety cars??? I remember one of them actually unlapped himself and got POINTS as a result. That seemed to be extremely unfair as well.
    The only reason there is so much heart burn is cause it happened in the last lap of the deciding race!
    If one looks dispassionately, it was Mercedes pit crew that actually lost the race. Hamy had a clear opportunity to come in and change tires when Max did the First Time.. Then with less older tires Hamy would have held off Max even with all this drama! Track Position was the key! It was only the extreme age of Hamy’s tires that let him down.
    Stop and think!

  8. Callitasuseeit
    16th December 2021, 10:15

    If one looks dispassionately, it was Mercedes pit crew that actually lost the race. Hamy had a clear opportunity to come in and change tires when Max did the First Time.. Then with less older tires Hamy would have held off Max even with all this drama! Track Position was the key! It was only the extreme age of Hamy’s tires that let him down.
    Stop and think!

  9. petebaldwin (@)
    16th December 2021, 10:16

    Good. Ultimately I think they knew that there was 0 chance of getting the result of the Championship changed so their options were to a) do nothing, b) work with the FIA to get the rules sorted or c) appeal through the courts, damage F1 (which also hurts themselves) and ultimately, at best, end up with the same results as option b.

    I have no doubt that they would have kept the threat of a appeal live until the FIA satisfied their requirements which will be what the FIA announced yesterday – an enquiry into this and a re-working of the rules with full team and driver involvement.

    1. They cannot keep the threat of an appeal live, because the time period to lodge an appeal ends today. Threatening a partner in an ongoing discussion is not very conducive to a positive outcome.

      I do not like this reworking of the rules with “full team and driver involvement”. Over time this approach has eroded the authority of the FIA and has lead to bad rules, because they are often built on compromise. This also leads to everybody thinking they can perpetually discuss the rules.

      1. petebaldwin (@)
        16th December 2021, 10:26

        Yeah the appeal is done now – I mean they kept it open until this point (after the FIA announced they would carry out an enquiry into what happened).

      2. My guess is that part of why the FIA and Mercedes took this long to get to some kind of agreement @uzsjgb has to do with the company as such, not just the team, putting their weight behind wanting to see change, or … (pulling the “Ferrari card”).

        They kept the appeal on the books until the FIA announced what they agreed. Now a new FIA president can pick it up on Friday afternoon and happily announce in January/Februari that they have sat down with stakeholders and ironed out issues to happily venture forth into new seasons together.

        We might hear some rumours of Mercedes having told the FIA that without changes, the company would not feel very positive about F1 in between depending on where the talks about those “clarifications” are going. But the company doesn’t need, or want an acrimonous relation to the FIA leadership. They saw what that looked like between Mercedes-McLaren and Mosley/Ecclestone a bit over a decade ago. Nobody wants that.

  10. I dislike this immensely.

  11. I’m all for giving Masi a keyboard with buttons to set off sprinklers and various traps and whatnot. If Masi is allowed to make the race more entertaining in whatever way he sees fit, then at least give him some entertaining tools to do it.

    1. Yep thats the future of F1, sprinklers, fan boost, boost areas off line like formula e, the list of entertainment avenues is only limited by the imagination, the series known as F1 will be the pinnacle of entertainment with drive to survive renamed ‘ keeping up with the verstappens ‘
      Millions will tune in to see the latest gossip an intrigue with random race fabricated endings to keep the gravy train rolling, drivers will be encouraged to drive more dangerously with the ‘ verstappen dive bomb ‘ being the manoeuvre of choice that will be put to a vote for the best as voted by the audience for an extra point, who’s got 90 minutes to watch a race? Where just have three 30 minute races over 3 days with a reverse grid thrown in for good measure as everyone likes a good dive bombing race, have you got billionaire parents and cant drive for toffee then why not join in, seats available now for the right price.

      1. Nope, it won’t happen that way either. If it happens all the time it isn’t special, between every 5 years to once a decade or so, a title deciding controversy seems about right. Enough to keep us addicted, but still getting the pay off.

        If they are smart they no doubt have gaming psychologists behind the scenes figuring out how to keep us hopeless and hooked. Not even joking.

    2. Masi did what his job description told him to do. All teams spoke in favor of trying to determine results by racing, not ending it under SC. It’s not as if a race hasn’t been decided by a safety car near the end of a race before. When you’re leading the race – you’re in a tough spot when the SC comes out. Nothing new here. I feel sorry for Hamilton, but Masi was looking to apply rules & agreements as if it was any other race. As he should.
      People should be mindful of trying to look at this if it was just one race, irrespective of it being a championship decider or not. And not utter all this needless hyperbole about a championship being stolen in this one moment or whatever.
      Just be thankful for a great year of great racing between 2 great racers!

      1. His job is the run the race as per the rules. He did not and this along with the many other huge inconsistencies he’s been behind has smirched this season.

      2. Andy (@andyfromsandy)
        16th December 2021, 11:41

        Masi was looking to apply rules & agreements as if it was any other race. As he should.

        To answer that is to look at Eifel 2020 GP.

      3. Masi did what his job description told him to do. All teams spoke in favor of trying to determine results by racing, not ending it under SC.

        Then just don’t allow any lapped cars to unlap themselves. Therefore you still allow for green flag racing to the chequered flag as agreed upon with teams, whilst applying the rules in a manner that is at least consistent for all runners (not one rule for 5 lapped cars, another for the remaining lapped cars). It’s not rocket science.

        1. whilst applying the rules in a manner that is at least consistent for all runners

          Not only that, but also in a way which (technically) is available as an option to him within the rules.

    3. Bernie suggested sprinklers years ago, maybe in the late 2000s.

  12. No !
    No !!
    Nooooooo !!
    Why, god, why ?

    I had allready prepared my gif memes !
    They wont serve anymore now !

    Damn 😁

  13. Max Verstappen – WDC on paper only and the #1 on his car will be motivation for everyone at Brackley.

    Sir Lewis and Mercedes have taken an extremely high road and I don’t blame them.

    1. BW (@deliberator)
      16th December 2021, 10:27

      Was certainly a high road across the run off on lap 1… Not to mention the high road at Copse.

      1. Craig