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Mercedes

Why Mercedes are happy with the FIA's Abu Dhabi report

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff has given his reaction to the FIA releasing their report into last year's title-deciding Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Hamilton Verstappen start Aub Dhabi
Article
To news overview © Mercedes

Toto Wolff has hailed a "good step forward" from the FIA after F1's governing body released their report into the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton had dominated last year's title decider until a late Safety Car resulted in a hugely controversial - and well-documented - conclusion to the race, with Red Bull's Max Verstappen pouncing to take the crown.

As the dust settled on the finale, the FIA embarked on a detailed investigation into the race to compile a report and establish recommendations, with the aim of ensuring that such circumstances cannot be repeated going forward.

Under the leadership of new President Mohammed Ben Sulayem, the report was published on the Saturday of the Bahrain Grand Prix weekend, with the admission of "human error" following Michael Masi's removal as Race Director.

Wolff hails "a massive step change" for the FIA

Following Hamilton's comments on the matter, Mercedes boss Wolff offered his own thoughts and welcomed the FIA's actions.

"I think it's a massive step change to what we've seen before," Wolff told media, including RacingNews365.com, when asked to digest the report.

"Whether the report is complete or not, or weak or hard, I think to release it is a good step forward in terms of governance.

"You can read it either way. I think, for us, there is the sentence, or the words, that say 'human error'. And human error, and their acknowledgment of it, is I think very important – now we close the chapter."

On that note, he added: "I have not been thinking about Abu Dhabi anymore since our car has proven to be not competitive on the track for this year."

Wolff and Mercedes have faith in the new FIA President

Several recommendations were made by the FIA as part of the report, while two new Race Directors and a Virtual Race Control room have already arrived in 2022, leaving Wolff confident for the future.

"We need to see the step change that has been made by releasing the report, line by line," added Wolff, when pushed for further thoughts.

"You can look at the interpretation, or the exact wording, [but] I'm happy that there is more transparency.

"I know from my conversations with Mohammed that he's very resolute in putting in a system that is prone to less mistakes. There will be a Virtual Race Room back in the FIA offices and I think this is what counts.

"Dwelling about Abu Dhabi doesn't make my or our life easier at all. It's happened, the trophy's in somebody else's cabinet, and that's it, chapter closed.

"I think the FIA will have learned of how things should not be handled."

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