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Stewards not moved by ’doomsday’ complaints - Masi

"I would still have asked the stewards to look at that incident"

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By GMM

28 June 2021 - 14:43
Stewards not moved by ’doomsday’ (...)

F1 race director Michael Masi has played down claims that the stewards are being influenced by "doomsday" complaints about on-track incidents made by rival teams.

Valtteri Bottas was severely punished for accidentally spinning in the pitlane during practice in Austria last weekend, with McLaren’s radio complaint to Masi aired publicly on TV.

The Finnish driver said rival teams are always "trying to screw you over" with these sorts of cries on the grounds of safety.

"It’s highly entertaining how quickly some of these teams report to Masi with their doomsday scenarios," Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff said.

"I like it a lot that this radio channel is now open so that we can all laugh at them."

Wolff acknowledged that Bottas’ move was dangerous, but he said the 31-year-old could have potentially minimised his penalty by making an excuse.

"Valtteri answered the race stewards openly and honestly that he was practicing something," he said.

"Many other drivers would have pretended that they had no idea what happened, or pointed out that the adverts all over the track were slippery or something. But what Valtteri did was honestly admit his mistake.

"I think we could use a little more integrity in the paddock, as Bottas shows himself," said Wolff.

However, Masi rejected the idea that the F1 stewards are being influenced by rival teams and their "doomsday" mongering.

"Actually, the stewards don’t hear my conversations with the teams," the F1 race director insisted. "They don’t hear the teams during the race either.

"They have no access to that information."

Masi also explained that no team other than McLaren complained about the Bottas incident.

"I want to emphasis this: when incidents like this occur, we immediately notify all the teams that an investigation has begun," he said.

"It’s fair to say that I would still have asked the stewards to look at that incident even if McLaren had not said anything."

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