Ted Kravitz says Michael Masi “gave” the 2021 title to Max Verstappen

© Jiri Krenek for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

Sky Sports F1’s Ted Kravitz openly says Michael Masi “cost” Lewis Hamilton the 2021 title, but the FIA can’t admit it “because of the legitimacy of the world championship”.

In his “Ted’s Notebook” show ahead of the French Grand Prix, Ted Kravitz pondered what the news that Michael Masi has left the FIA means for Formula 1 and its fans.

After the Australian was removed from his position of race director, following the controversial ending of the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, in which he ignored the rules and basically gifted the world title to Max Verstappen, FIA president Mohammed ben Sulayem said the door was still open for him to return in a different capacity.

However, following Masi’s announcement that he was departing the FIA altogether, Kravitz asks if we can now “have some closure” on Abu Dhabi.

“Am I hanging on to Abu Dhabi? Well Lewis is,” Kravitz said.

“Toto [Wolff] is… heaven knows a lot of other people are, and I think it’s important that we close the book.

“Now, is Michael Masi… so this week, between now and Austria, we had the closing of the door, the closing of the chapter of the race director Michael Masi, who didn’t interpret the rules in the way that they’ve been written.

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“And that cost Lewis Hamilton an eighth world championship, gave it to Max Verstappen.

“So, the last we heard, the FIA were discussing with Michael Masi about some other role within the FIA he might do, and then we’ve heard nothing for ages.

“And now, just between Austria and here [France] we hear that Michael Masi has left the FIA and has gone back to Australia.

“So, has there been some sort of agreement? Has there been some sort of settlement? Has there been a legal case? We don’t know.

“Why has Michael Masi left the FIA at all when all the FIA would say about Abu Dhabi was that there was some human error but, essentially, everything was handled as it could have been… Maybe not should have been, but could have been.

“The FIA can’t say anything more because of the legitimacy of the world championship. We’ve spoken about that before, you’ll have your own views on that I’m sure.

“Anyway, it’s not Mercedes’ problem; they closed the door on Abu Dhabi earlier on in January when Michael Masi was effectively not going to be race director anymore.

“The fact that now it’s just official between Masi and the FIA has nothing to do with Mercedes.

“But I think the rest of us… can we now have some closure? Open question, can we now have some closure on Abu Dhabi, [now] that Michael Masi has nothing to do with Formula 1 anymore, potentially ever.

“And he’s gone with our best wishes as a human being, of course, back to Australia to live with his family.

“Maybe we can,” the Briton concluded.

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