The FIA Doesn't Seem Terribly Concerned About 'Transparency'

The results of its inquiry into last season's final race won't be made public for now.

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Last year’s final race in Abu Dhabi was controversial, to say the least, with Max Verstappen beating Lewis Hamilton on the final lap after some super iffy decisions from race director Michael Masi. Afterward, the FIA said they would conduct an inquiry into what went down, and, presumably, present those findings to the public. Well, you can forget about that last part for now.

Instead, the FIA said that it would be talking about the completed inquiry with teams, and, after that, talking about changes. None of this is terribly transparent, which invites skepticism, if not cynicism.

From The Guardian:

The sport’s governing body presented its report to the teams on Monday but in the forthcoming days will reveal only its plans of proposed changes.

The development will not be welcomed by those who felt the sport’s integrity was put at risk by events at last season’s finale. The FIA was expected to share the findings publicly but instead issued a short statement.

“The FIA president [Mohammed Ahmed bin Sulayem] led detailed discussions of the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix,” it read. “Feedback from the commission on matters raised will be incorporated into the president’s analysis and he will publicly present news of structural changes and action plan in the coming days.”


One possible change that isn’t related to Abu Dhabi: Giving points proportionally to laps finished after a race that completes more than two laps and doesn’t finish because of weather, as happened in Belgium last year. Such a rule might have even swung the championship in 2021, given that in Belgium, which Verstappen won after just two laps, he got half the winner’s 25 points, and a proportional system would have given him several fewer.

Anyway, as the Guardian says, many Formula 1 fans truly are up in arms over this, and deeply worried about the sport’s integrity, especially after, last week, audio of race director Michael Masi resurfaced, which appeared to show Masi taking direction from Red Bull at the crucial moment. Red Bull was, you know, working the ref. My guess is that, in any case, that ref won’t be around much longer.