Wolff: Red Bull manipulated Masi & the FIA

Wolff says Masi was manipulated by Red Bull last season – Mercedes chief Toto Wolff has claimed in a Sky Sports documentary that former F1 race director Michael Masi was manipulated by Red Bull at the end of last season.

Duel is the name of a new Sky Sports documentary that follows the 2021 world championship battle between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton. The documentary is illustrated with exclusive interviews with the key people at the centre of the battle last year, but also the huge controversy at the end of the season that cost Michael Masi his job.

In the documentary, Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff looks back at Lewis Hamilton’s controversial defeat of rival Max Verstappen, a defeat he says was due to “bad decisions” made by the race director who was manipulated by Red Bull – the Austrian pointing to both the Abu Dhabi final and the penultimate race in Saudi Arabia as concrete examples.


As a reminder, in Saudi Arabia Michael Masi made a ‘deal’ with Red Bull’s sporting director Jonathan Wheatley on grid positions on the restart of the race after a stoppage, despite having changed his mind about the safety car rules amidst Red Bull’s protests in Abu Dhabi during the last round, all of which was broadcast live on television.

“Jonathan Wheatley did his job. He turned Michael Masi the race director [in their camp], not just in Abu Dhabi, but before, and Max [Verstappen] probably owes him a lot,” insisted Toto Wolff in the Duel documentary.

Regarding Michael Masi – who will no longer be Formula 1 race director this year after being replaced by Eduardo Freitas and Niels Wittich – Wolff added: “I haven’t spoken to him [since Abu Dhabi] and I never want to speak to him again. His decisions were wrong and I’m sure he regrets them. The FIA should have seen much earlier that there was a problem, there was a structural problem, a personality problem.”

Max Verstappen finally won the title after overtaking Hamilton on the final lap of the race in Abu Dhabi, helped by Masi’s decision to run on fresh soft tyres while his rival Lewis Hamilton was on old hard tyres. On this subject, Wolff said:

“It’s like a football match where a team is 1-0 up and suddenly the referee says, ‘now it’s the golden goal. 0-0, whoever scores the next goal wins’. And by the way, you have to play without studs.”



9 responses to “Wolff: Red Bull manipulated Masi & the FIA

  1. Pot. Kettle. And besides… both teams had the opportunity to put shoes on. Wolf is still viewing the world lobsided.

    • Show me a TP that doesn’t view the (competitve) world with their team at the centre… its literally their job

      Ginger Spice is even more blatant

  2. The boo-hoo brothers (Wolf and Hamilton) still can’t accept defeat I see. And yes, every time a safety car is deployed it neutralises the race, which is nothing like football, but hey Toto – welcome to F1 in a competitive field.

  3. I see all the Mercedes and Hamilton haters are out in force again! Max won albeit gifted by FIA yet you guys continue to attack Mercedes, Toto has an unprecedented record in F1, Horner is a baby compared to him. When the day comes that Red Bull with several back to back Team wins and have a seven times champion then maybe you can shout but for now, it’s a flash in the pan and only happened because Horner bullied Masi into making the worst mistake of his life. I can see Horner and Max being the Boo Hoo brothers this year and Marko still not knowing which year it is 😂

  4. And now the reward for the sourest looser: Juryreport: with focussing on just one race, Ignoring the rest of the season and overlooking all events not in their favour…. And the winner is…(drumroll)…. the Hamiltonfans!! Congratulations!

    • Glad to see you are vigilant as ever and are carrying on with the Max is a worthy champion nonsense, regardless of the fact that the rest of the world apart from the Lewis haters know Lewis was robbed and had it not been for Masi Max would be crying into his porridge right now. There are a lot of intelligent people that are not all Lewis fans but racing fans that right honest factual posts horrified by what went on in Abu Dhabi. Horner was a disgrace to the sport and Masi was culpable and has been rightly fired for it. How’s Max going to cope this season without Masi in his corner, I suspect driving dangerously, getting more points and getting a race ban, then sulking for weeks. BTW it’s loser not looser 😁

      • Whatever Steve. BTW my english is still way better then your dutch so if nitpicking on typo’s is making you feel good… bee mi gest !

        • That’s all you can reply, your Dutch is better than mine, talk about scraping the barrel! As you well know I speak and write in other languages and still manage to spell correctly.

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