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2021 F1

F1 drivers reveals confused by ‘weird’ Michael Masi decision on final lap of Abu Dhabi GP

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FIA ‘manipulated’ last lap showdown in radio message

Formula One drivers have admitted that they were confused by ‘weird’ Race Director Michael Masi’s controversial call on final impressive lap of championship decider Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

On final stint of the race Williams F1 driver Nicholas Latifi crashed into the barrier and the safety car sprung into action. Final SC run allowed Max Verstappen to close the gap to his title rival and give him one last chance to secure his first crown – race director has permitted one more racing lap for title battle with controversial decision.

The strange safety car procedure, which was the question of a post-race protest and intention to appeal by the Mercedes, came as a surprise to the other F1 drivers as well.

“I didn’t actually know it was only like the first three or four [five] up to Max,” said McLaren youngster Lando Norris, who kept his seventh place at the flag ahead of Fernando Alonso.

“So it was obviously made to be a fight, it was for the TV of course, it was for the result. Whether or not it was fair is not up to me to decide.

“Sometimes they let you go, sometimes they don’t, it’s just 50/50 half the time.

“But they said that they’re not gonna let us pass. So I’m guessing that was a message to say, they were just not going to let us pass at all.

“But then to suddenly do it just for the final lap, and for a one lap shootout, then I’m a bit surprised.”

it was a little bit confusing – Alonso

“When the safety car was out I thought we were able to overtake quickly, because normally it is what happens,” said the double time F1 world champion Alonso.

“You see the green light of the safety car, and then you are unlapping yourself until they remove the car.

“But we didn’t have that green signal, and then two laps after the engineer told me that you will not be able to unlap yourself, and the positions would stay like this.

“One corner later the green light came on and I said, ‘But we have a green light?’ And they said, ‘Yeah, yeah, you can do it now, follow Norris.’ And I followed Norris. So it was a little bit confusing.” The Spaniard added.

Four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel said he got the message late: “Very late, but I think too late, they should let us pass straight away like other times.

“And obviously, you have the guys fighting in the front. So you’ve just got to clear the path. I don’t know what it was. For us it was a shame because we didn’t have a race then, because everything was spread out.”

McLaren veteran Daniel Ricciardo was one of those who missed out on the opportunity to move past the safety car early, and said afterwards that he was confused as to why Masi had made the “weird” call.

“I don’t want you to ask me – I want to ask you. Tell me, tell me what happened,” Ricciardo joked after the race, describing it as a “crazy, crazy, crazy final”.

The Australian continued: “At the end it was kind of weird, they said cars can’t pass, the lapped cars, then some of them did, but then I wasn’t allowed to.

“We did a one-lap restart, I’m sitting right behind Lewis and Max, like, why am I here? I don’t know. It was very interesting.”‘

“For me it was a bit weird because I was a bit in the middle of nowhere,” said Leclerc.

“We could overtake the leaders I think for just like a lap before restarting, and we were in the middle of nowhere.

“I was just fighting for the ninth place with Esteban, I think, just in front. But first I was told I would not be able to unlap myself, at the end at the last moment we actually had the opportunity to unlap ourselves.

“So yeah, it was a bit of a strange one.”

Ferrari ace Carlos Sainz finished third, advancing Norris and team-mate Leclerc in the standings to finish fifth in the points, but only just held on from Yuki Tsunoda’s AlphaTauri.

“It was certainly a very strange situation for me,” said Sainz.

“Because I was obviously battling for a podium with Valtteri [Bottas] and some AlphaTauris behind with a medium tyre, while I was on a very used hard.

“At the beginning I was told they were not going to be allowed to unlap themselves, the people in front of me.

“Then it was decided to unlap themselves, and some people unlapped themselves, but there was still, I think it was an Aston Martin [Stroll] and a McLaren of [Daniel] Ricciardo, between the two leaders and myself.

“And this I’ve never had before, having to restart the race with these two guys in front of me, and while fighting for a P3.

“I do believe it was a strange one, and maybe something to look at because it was very strange to see, and it nearly cost me my podium, to be honest.”

2022 F1

F1 Championship Points Standing – After Imola GP

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2022 F1 Drivers Championship Standing after F1 Emilia Romagna GP

Pos Driver Team Points
1Charles LeclercFerrari86
2Max VerstappenRed Bull59
3Sergio PerezRed Bull54
4George RussellWilliams49
5Carlos SainzFerrari38
6Lando NorrisMcLaren35
7Lewis HamiltonMercedes28
8Valtteri BottasMercedes24
9Esteban OconAlpine20
10Kevin MagnussenHaas15
11Daniel RicciardoMcLaren11
12Yuki TsunodaAlphaTauri10
13Pierre GaslyAlphaTauri6
14Fernando AlonsoAlpine2
15Zhou GuanyuAlfa Romeo1
16Alex AlbonWilliams1
17Lance StrollAston Martin1
18Mick SchumacherHaas0
19Sebastian VettelAston Martin0
20Nicholas LatifiWilliams0

2022 F1 Teams Championship Standing after F1 Imola Emilia Romagna GP

Pos Team Points
1Ferrari124
2Red Bull113
3Mercedes77
4McLaren46
5Alfa Romeo25
6Alpine22
7AlphaTauri16
8Haas15
9Aston Martin5
10Williams1

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2022 F1

Race results – F1 Imola Emilia Romagna GP

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Defending world champion Max Verstappen has won at Imola for the second season in a row ahead of his teammate Sergio Perez, Red Bull made 1-2 finish as leaders Ferrari’s home Grand Prix turned into a terrible for the Italian outfit.

Pos Driver Team LapsTimePoints
1Max VerstappenRed Bull631:32:07.98626
2Sergio PerezRed Bull63+16.527s18
3Lando NorrisMcLaren63+34.834s15
4George RussellMercedes63+42.506s12
5Valtteri BottasAlfa Romeo63+43.181s10
6Charles LeclercFerrari63+56.072s8
7Yuki TsunodaAlphaTauri63+61.110s6
8Sebastian VettelAston Martin63+70.892s4
9Kevin Magnussen Haas63+75.260s2
10Lance StrollAston Martin62+1 lap1
11Alex Albon Williams62+1 lap0
12Pierre GaslyAlphaTauri62+1 lap0
13Lewis HamiltonMercedes62+1 lap0
14Esteban OconAlpine62+1 lap0
15Zhou GuanyuAlfa Romeo62+1 lap0
16Nicholas LatifiWilliams62+1 lap0
17Mick SchumacherHaas62+1 lap0
18Daniel RicciardoMcLaren62+1 lap0
19Fernando AlonsoAlpine6DNF0
20Carlos SainzFerrari0DNF0

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2022 F1

Hamilton and Wolff spotted in heated conversation after Imola disaster

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Lewis Hamilton 2022 F1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

During Emilia Romagna Grand Prix post qualifying session, Sir Lewis Hamilton and his Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff was seen engaging in a heated conversation, the Brit was eliminated from Q2 on Friday.

Bothe Hamilton and Wolff be found to be holding heated conversations in the Mercedes garage just after the Brit crashed out of Q2 at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix. It was another poor results, which was resulted P13 in for sprint race at Imola.

On the incident with Wolff, Hamilton said: “It’s all internal stuff. I’d rather not share that. But yeah we’ll keep working, it is what it is. Each weekend is a rescue.

“It wasn’t a great session. Yeah. Naturally, it’s disappointing. We came here with optimism and we know everyone is working really hard at the factory and when things don’t come together it’s disappointing. I think we under-performed as a team today.

“There are things that we should have done and didn’t do. Anyway, we will work as hard as we can to move up in the sprint race. Hopefully tomorrow is better, weather-wise, and who knows, maybe we can work our way forwards.”

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SAUDI GRAND PRIX

Date Session Time
FRI DEC 03 FP1 16:30 - 17:30
FRI DEC 03 FP2 20:00 - 21:00
SAT DEC 04 FP3 17:00 - 18:00
SAT DEC 04 QUALI 20:00 - 21:00
SUN DEC 05 RACE 20:30 - 23:30

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