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Max Verstappen

Verstappen makes FIA request following Abu Dhabi report

Max Verstappen welcomed the publishing of an in-depth report from the FIA into the events of the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, and suggested such measures should be implemented every year.

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To news overview © Michael Potts / RacingNews365

Max Verstappen says the FIA should consider publishing a report highlighting areas of concern at the end of every season.

The winter break between the 2021 and 2022 Formula 1 seasons was dominated by the fallout from the well-documented events of the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, with the governing body conducting an in-depth investigation into the race in a bid to identify areas of weakness.

The review resulted in several remedial steps being taken, including the replacement of former Race Director Michael Masi with new names Eduardo Freitas and Niels Wittich, as well as the introduction of a Virtual Race Control and the tightening up of the wording of the regulations.

While Verstappen criticised the decision to replace Masi at the time, the reigning World Champion welcomed the general idea of a thorough annual investigation into areas of fallibility.

"I think it's good that they [the FIA] showed it to the world – what they had been investigating," Verstappen said in an interview with Sky Sports.

"For me, this kind of investigation should happen every single year. I think, as an organisation or as a team, you always want to try and improve and try to do things better.

"For me, it's quite a natural process you have to do anyway."

Verstappen approves of new approach to track limits

One of the criticisms levelled at Masi throughout 2021 was an inconsistent and sometimes vague approach to the enforcement of track limits.

For the 2022 season opener in Bahrain, the Race Director simply assigned the white line at the edge of the tarmac as the track limit – an approach Verstappen approved of.

"I think for this year anyway, we want to be a bit more clear before we go into a weekend about what is allowed and what isn't," he explained.

"Even when you talk about track limits. I think what worked really well in Bahrain was the white line. That's it – no discussion.

"Drivers always like to explore more of the track but, if it's the white line, it's the white line – you can't get around it."

Verstappen relished battle with Hamilton

The contentious Abu Dhabi race was the climax of a season-long battle between Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, with the Dutchman emerging as the victor as a result of the drama.

Aside from how the season ended, Verstappen made clear that he enjoyed the challenge of the season due to the fact he knew he would never be given a moment's respite by his illustrious competitor.

"From my side, I just enjoyed the battle we had overall," he commented.

"Not only the battle but just... you went to every single race weekend and you knew that you had to be on it.

"You could not make a mistake because, if you made a tiny mistake, they would be ahead. If they made a mistake, we would be ahead.

"It was a lot of pressure on you to try to be perfect, which is very hard every single weekend, to try and be perfect, but I really enjoyed it."

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