FIA explains why Verstappen decision took so long

The long wait to learn whether Max Verstappen had kept his Austrian Grand Prix victory was a result of various influencing factors, says FIA Formula 1 race director Michael Masi.

FIA explains why Verstappen decision took so long

Verstappen beat Charles Leclerc to win the race at the Red Bull Ring but his race-winning move was placed under investigation as the two drivers made contact and Leclerc briefly went off-track.

The decision to take no further action was communicated at 7.47pm local time, more than three hours after the race ended.

Asked by Motorsport.com to explain why the decision took so long, Masi said that it started with the incident occurring with three laps to go, giving little time to act before the end of the race.

“The primary part was we didn’t get going [with the stewards’ hearing] until 6pm, [because of] the various media commitments, the [television] pen and the post-race press conference,” said Masi. “The hearing itself, give or take, was about an hour with all parties involved.

“The stewards deliberated, looked at other cases, precedents, and spoke between themselves.

“By the time you write the decision and then make sure there are no typos or anything in it and so forth, and then summon the teams back, delivering the decision to them, it quickly [adds up].

“Time flies a lot more when you’re sitting outside like all of us than it does when you’re sitting in the room. So it was just one of those things, they were considering absolutely everything.”

More from the Austrian GP:

The decision followed two controversial calls at the previous two races in France and Canada.

In France, Daniel Ricciardo was given a time penalty that dropped him out of the points almost three hours after the race ended.

The decision to punish Sebastian Vettel in Canada was made during the race and therefore even though Vettel crossed the line first, Lewis Hamilton inherited the win immediately and the result was clear.

Asked if something could be changed to prevent the winner changing beyond the race’s end, Masi admitted it was “tough” and pointed out that a problem uncovered in post-race scrutineering that results in disqualification can also change the identity of the winner.

“You want the right decision made, considering all the circumstances and all the factors that are around, and using as much as information as you have available,” he added.

Masi also suggested it was not correct to draw parallels to decision-making speeds in other sports.

“It’s just one of those nuances in this sport,” he said. “We can’t blow a whistle and freeze everything, make a decision, and play on.

“We try wherever possible to have the podium be the podium, but when it’s the last two or three laps of the race, it does make it quite difficult.

“If it was something that happened on lap three I would have thought that if the stewards felt they had everything, they would have made a decision and it would have been ‘play on’.”

shares
comments
Binotto: Ferrari won't appeal "wrong" Verstappen verdict

Previous article

Binotto: Ferrari won't appeal "wrong" Verstappen verdict

Next article

Vettel/Verstappen incident comparision "apples and oranges" - FIA

Vettel/Verstappen incident comparision "apples and oranges" - FIA
Load comments
The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career Prime

The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career

Emerson Fittipaldi’s decision to go racing with his brother led to him falling out of F1, but he bloomed again on the IndyCar scene. NIGEL ROEBUCK considers a career of two halves

Why Mercedes is pleased to be in the Hungary hunt at a 'Red Bull track' Prime

Why Mercedes is pleased to be in the Hungary hunt at a 'Red Bull track'

Mercedes ended Friday practice at the Hungaroring with a clear gap to Red Bull thanks to Valtteri Bottas’s pace in topping FP2. But there are other reasons why the Black Arrows squad feels satisfied with its progress so far at a track many Formula 1 observers reckon favours Red Bull overall...

Formula 1
Jul 30, 2021
How Red Bull endured its second car crash in two weeks Prime

How Red Bull endured its second car crash in two weeks

OPINION: Red Bull was justified to be upset that Lewis Hamilton survived his British GP clash with Max Verstappen and went on to win. But its attempts to lobby the FIA to reconsider the severity of Hamilton's in-race penalty were always likely to backfire, and have only succeeded in creating a PR disaster that will distract from its on-track efforts

Formula 1
Jul 30, 2021
The ‘screaming’ F1 engine future that may not be out of reach Prime

The ‘screaming’ F1 engine future that may not be out of reach

OPINION: It wasn't just the Verstappen/Hamilton clash that had the Red Bull and Mercedes bosses at loggerheads at Silverstone, with the nature of Formula 1's 2025 engines also subject for disagreement. But hopes to have loud, emotive engines that are also environmentally friendly don't have to be opposed.

Formula 1
Jul 29, 2021
How Lotus uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’ Prime

How Lotus uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’

Cast in the mould of its founder Colin Chapman, Lotus was powerful and daring but flawed – as it proved through further soaring peaks and painful troughs into the 1980s. DAMIEN SMITH examines a game-changing era

Formula 1
Jul 27, 2021
The core problems Yas Marina’s long-awaited tweaks won't address Prime

The core problems Yas Marina’s long-awaited tweaks won't address

OPINION: Changes to the layout of Abu Dhabi’s circuit aim to reverse the trend of insipid Formula 1 races there - the promoter has even described one of the new corners as “iconic”. And that, argues STUART CODLING, is one of this venue’s abiding failings

Formula 1
Jul 26, 2021
How Ferrari offered Callum Ilott what Red Bull couldn't Prime

How Ferrari offered Callum Ilott what Red Bull couldn't

Last year's Formula 2 runner-up Callum Ilott could be on his way to becoming the first Briton to contest a grand prix in an Alfa Romeo since Reg Parnell in 1950. But, says Oleg Karpov, the Ferrari Driver Academy protege is having to temper his ambition at the moment – outwardly at least…

Formula 1
Jul 25, 2021
The signs that point to F1's rude health Prime

The signs that point to F1's rude health

OPINION: Formula 1's calendar might still be facing disruption as the pandemic affects travel but, says Mark Gallagher, the business itself is fundamentally strong thanks to the epic rivalry taking place on track and the consistent arrival of new sponsors.

Formula 1
Jul 24, 2021