OCTOBER 22, 2022

Formula 1 ousts another race director

Formula 1 has ousted yet another race director.

Yuki Tsunoda, Japanese GP 2022
© Red Bull

Formula 1 has ousted yet another race director.

After the highly controversial 2021 championship finale in Abu Dhabi, the sport's full-time race director Michael Masi lost his job.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff is still furious.

"Human error - or an error human," the Austrian said when asked about the decisions surrounding the decisive final safety car period of the ultra-intense 2021 tight fight.

"It changed the result, and it would have made Lewis (Hamilton) an eight time champion and the best there ever has been," he said at Harvard Business School.

With Masi out, the FIA came up with a new race director structure in which Eduardo Frietas and Niels Wittich would alternate the post from 2022.

But after a series of controversial decisions so far this season, including the presence of a recovery vehicle on the track at Suzuka, a new FIA review has not resulted in the expulsion of race director Freitas.

"From the United States Grand Prix in Austin and the following races in Mexico, Brazil and Abu Dhabi, Niels Wittich will assume the position of race director with the support of race control staff," the FIA confirmed.

With the budget cap scandal now raging, Hamilton said in Austin that it's a "confusing time for fans".

"I mean, I don't think the sport's trying to make mistakes," he said, "but we're going to continue over the years to be coming up against things and hurdles."