Masi could be replaced as FIA race director after F1 finale controversy

Current race director Michael Masi could be replaced ahead of the 2022 Formula 1 season, according to the FIA's head of single-seaters Peter Bayer.
Michael Masi (AUS) FIA Race Director.
Michael Masi (AUS) FIA Race Director.

Bayer is leading the investigation into the controversial ending to last season which saw Max Verstappen beat Lewis Hamilton to the drivers’ championship in controversial circumstances.

The future of the FIA race director Masi is still unclear after he was heavily criticised for not following the rules at the Safety Car restart in the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

In quotes reported by the BBC, Bayer said: “Michael did a super job in many ways. We told him that. But also that there is a possibility there could be a new race director.

“[We are looking at] dividing the various tasks of the race director, who is also sports director, safety and track delegate.

“That was simply too much. These roles are divided between several people. This reduces the burden on the race director.”

Bayer revealed that the rules surrounding the Safety Car are being looked at, citing the example of NASCAR.

“If neutralisation is necessary in the last two laps of the race, the lap counting ends and the laps are added at the end of the safety car phase,” he explained. “This could cause a fuel problem in F1, which is why it is being looked at more closely.

We also asked the teams if their requirement not to finish a race under safety car was still relevant, to which they all agreed.”

He also confirmed that team personnel are no longer allowed to communicate with the race director.

“The team managers will still be able to - they have to be able to ask questions,” he added. “We want to build in a buffer with an employee who accepts these requests.

“In the future, the race director will be able to concentrate on his task and will no longer be distracted.”

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