Mercedes lodge official protest as Max Verstappen wins world title in controversial circumstances
Sunday, December 12th, 2021 19:04 | < 1 min read
Mercedes have lodged two official protests against the result of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and the controversial end to the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship.
Max Verstappen clinched the title after passing Lewis Hamilton on the final lap of a marathon 22-race season after a cavalcade of cars were allowed to pass the safety car to leave Verstappen just behind Hamilton’s leading car.
Having pitted onto the quicker, soft tyres, the Dutchman managed to clearly pass Hamilton for the win, with Mercedes arguing that FIA race director Michael Masi had gone against the rules in that decision.
Mercedes lodged one protest for what it called an “alleged breach of article 48.8 of the 2021 FIA Formula 1 sporting regulations”.
The rule states that “no driver may overtake another car on the track, including the safety car, until he passed the line for the first time after the safety car has returned to the pits”.
Mercedes’ second protest was regarding article 48.12 which says that “any cars that have been lapped by the leader will be required to pass the cars on the lead lap and the safety car”.