Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has shared particulars from a lunch he organized with Michael Masi forward of the 2021 F1 title decider in Abu Dhabi.
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Toto Wolff has revealed that he had a dialog with Michael Masi over lunch earlier than final yr’s title-deciding Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
Mercedes boss Wolff sat down with then-Race Director Masi to supply some “sincere suggestions” over the Australian’s efficiency, arguing that he “must take criticism on board” and never “block outdoors opinion”.
Just a few days later, Lewis Hamilton was on the right track to beat Max Verstappen to the race win and the world title, just for a late-race Security Automotive – and Masi’s well-documented decision-making – to show the state of affairs on its head.
Masi was subsequently faraway from his function, with an FIA investigation admitting to “human error”, however the matter stays a painful one for each Wolff and Hamilton.
Wolff reveals pre-Abu Dhabi dialog with Masi
Nearly 4 months on, Wolff has shed some extra mild on the construct as much as the dramatic occasions on the Yas Marina Circuit.
“It’s fairly attention-grabbing, as a result of I had lunch with
[Masi] on the Wednesday earlier than the race,” Wolff defined to the Press Affiliation.
“I mentioned to him that, ‘I actually wish to let you know,
with out patronising you, that you should take criticism on board and develop
from there. Lewis does it daily, however you might be man who all the time appears to know
“It wasn’t about influencing him, however actually giving
my sincere suggestions that he should not block outdoors opinion as merely being
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Wolff means that Masi was "proof against suggestions"
Wolff went on to query Masi’s behaviour within the Race Director function, which he took on in 2019 when Charlie Whiting handed away.
“You hear from the drivers, and the way the drivers’
briefings had been carried out [by Masi], and among the guys mentioned it was nearly
disrespectful how he handled a few of them,” Wolff commented.
“There’s a promoter of one of many races within the
Center East who mentioned he was so relieved he had gone as a result of he obtained a lot
abuse from him.
“He was simply proof against any suggestions and even as we speak
he has not correctly mirrored that he did one thing mistaken.”
Wolff added: “He was a legal responsibility for the game, as a result of all people saved speaking about Abu Dhabi and the Race Director.
“The Race Director shouldn’t be any person that folks speak about, however somebody who does the job and makes positive the race is run in line with the rules.”