FIA to undertake 'detailed analysis' of controversial Abu Dhabi finale

© XPB 

The FIA has proposed to the World Motor Sport Council that a "detailed analysis and clarification exercise" be undertaken regarding the controversial proceedings that marked the end of last Sunday's title decider in Abu Dhabi.

Race control's management of the late Safety Car period and the race's subsequent restart caused confusion among the field of competitors and F1's fans alike.

The proceedings led to the race being turned on its head and Max Verstappen overhauling Lewis Hamilton for the world title on the final lap of the event.

Mercedes is disputing race control's application of the regulations but has yet to confirm its intent to appeal a protest that was dismissed after the race by the stewards.

"The circumstances surrounding the use of the Safety Car following the incident of driver Nicholas Latifi, and the related communications between the FIA Race Direction team and the Formula 1 teams, have notably generated significant misunderstanding and reactions from Formula 1 teams, drivers and fans, an argument that is currently tarnishing the image of the Championship and the due celebration of the first Drivers' World Championship title won by Max Verstappen and the eighth consecutive Constructors' World Championship title won by Mercedes," the FIA said in a statement released on Wednesday evening.

"Following the presentation of a report regarding the sequence of events that took place following the incident on Lap 53 of the Grand Prix and in a constant drive for improvement, the FIA President proposed to the World Motor Sport Council that a detailed analysis and clarification exercise for the future with all relevant parties will now take place.

"This matter will be discussed and addressed with all the teams and drivers to draw any lessons from this situation and clarity to be provided to the participants, media, and fans about the current regulations to preserve the competitive nature of our sport while ensuring the safety of the drivers and officials. It is not only Formula 1 that may benefit from this analysis, but also more generally all the other FIA circuit championships.

"Following that presentation and an extensive discussion, the World Council has decided to unanimously support the President’s proposal."

Although Mercedes has implemented a communication blackout since last Sunday evening, it is widely expected at this stage - and indeed hoped - that the German manufacturer will not appeal its protest and signal that it has accepted the final result of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and this Max Verstappen's world title.

The Red Bull driver is still scheduled to receive his world champion's trophy on Thursday evening at the FIA's prize giving gala in Paris.

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