Michael Masi, the former F1 race director whose decisions during the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix stirred up controversy, might find his way back into the FIA fold. FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem has not ruled out the possibility of Masi rejoining the organization, despite the backlash following the event that cost Lewis Hamilton a record-breaking eighth world title.
Between the lines
- Masi was ousted after a contentious call at the 2021 Abu Dhabi GP, which many believe cost Hamilton the championship.
- FIA President Ben Sulayem, who took office post-2021 season, suggests Masi could return to the FIA in some capacity.
- The nature of Masi’s potential return is not specified, but Ben Sulayem’s comments indicate a softening stance on Masi’s past actions.
- Ben Sulayem compares the F1 controversy to historical sports events, like the 1966 World Cup, to highlight the permanence of contentious decisions.
The drama unfolded at the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, where Michael Masi’s interpretation of the safety car rules led to a restart that changed the course of the championship. The incident was later chalked up to human error following an FIA investigation, and Masi was removed from his position.
In a recent twist, Mohammed Ben Sulayem, the new sheriff in town at the FIA, has hinted at a possible redemption arc for Masi. While he didn’t carve it in stone, the FIA president’s musings in an interview with PA Sport have certainly stirred the pot. It’s like the plot of a sports drama where the fallen hero gets a second chance, but will the fans and the paddock be ready for such a comeback?
The specifics of Masi’s potential role are as clear as mud at this point. However, Ben Sulayem’s willingness to even entertain the idea suggests that the FIA is potentially looking to turn a new leaf, or maybe just shuffle the old ones around a bit. It’s a move that could either be a masterstroke or a recipe for déjà vu.
Adding a dash of historical perspective, Ben Sulayem compared the F1 fiasco to the infamous 1966 World Cup final, where a contentious goal was allowed in England’s favor. It’s a clever way of saying, “Hey, controversial calls are part of the game, and they stick.” It’s like saying, “Remember that time when…” to remind everyone that while the past can’t be changed, it can certainly be a talking point at dinner parties for decades.
In the grand scheme of things, this development is just the latest twist in the high-octane soap opera that is Formula 1. Whether Masi will return to the FIA and in what capacity remains to be seen. For now, fans and insiders alike will be watching closely, with opinions likely as divided as a split strategy on race day. Keep your eyes peeled and your Twitter fingers ready, because this story is far from over.