Susie Wolff is the first to release a statement regarding the happenings of F1 Abu Dhabi GP as she praises the teams/drivers but targets one individual.
Amid radio silence from Mercedes side since the happenings in F1 Abu Dhabi GP, Venturi Formula E team boss Susie Wolff is the first one to release a statement on the matter. This comes after the FIA WMSC released their view on Wednesday evening.
The governing body agreed that it is tarnishing the image of the championship and so their will be review into the matter ahead of the 2022 season with teams and drivers involved. While the decision from Mercedes is awaited, but such statements provides a hint.
Wolff has not just praised Mercedes and Red Bull, but also Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen for a stellar season. However, she has pointed out one individual – without naming him – for the controversial end to the grand prix.
It is naturally the FIA Race Director Michael Masi, whose decision to unlap only few cars under the safety car period brought confusion not just among fans but also the teams and drivers. While the intention could be ascertained, but the execution was controversial.
Wolff has more or less put the blame on Masi for the sour end and she hopes that things get better for next year. At the moment, Mercedes did not send either its F1 or Formula E winning cars for the FIA Gala, while their participation is a question mark for today.
Here’s the full statement:
— Susie Wolff (@Susie_Wolff) December 16, 2021
UPDATE: Moments after the statement from Susie Wolff, Mercedes released their official statement and confirmed its decision to drop their appeal just before the 96 hours deadline. It was also their first say since the happenings on Sunday.
Naturally, there was disbelief in the Mercedes camp and they admit to losing ‘faith in racing’. The discussions were on between the team and Hamilton on how to respond and the initial idea then was to protest straight after the race due to a deadline.
The later appeal was done to give them time and engage into a dialogue with F1 and the FIA which they did over the course of the last few days. The statement put out on Wednesday by the WMSC instilled some sense of relief among the team.
With the idea to involve team and drivers, Mercedes eventually decided to drop its appeal and look at 2022 from a new way under robust ruling. The team thanked Bottas, while praised Hamilton, Verstappen and Red Bull for a fantastic season.
Here’s the full statement:
“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.”
Here’s what FIA WMSC said
Here’s Lewis Hamilton getting formally knighted
Here’s what others and Lewis Hamilton thought of the situation
Here’s what the FIA stated while dismissing the protest and Mercedes’ appeal