F1 race director Michael Masi hits back at Fernando Alonso's 'special treatment' accusations

accreditation
0:00
play article
Subscribers can listen to this article
FIA Race Director Michael Masi inspects the damage to the track barriers after a crash between Jack Aitken of Great Britain and Campos Racing (9) and Luca Ghiotto of Italy and Hitech Grand Prix (25) during the Formula 2 Championship Sprint Race at Sochi Autodrom on September 27, 2020 in Sochi, Russia.
FIA Race Director Michael Masi inspects the damage to the track barriers after a crash between Jack Aitken of Great Britain and Campos Racing (9) and Luca Ghiotto of Italy and Hitech Grand Prix (25) during the Formula 2 Championship Sprint Race at Sochi Autodrom on September 27, 2020 in Sochi, Russia.
Photo by Clive Mason - Formula 1/Formula 1

Michael Masi has hit back at F1 veteran Fernando Alonso's claim that FIA officials often make biased decisions when penalising drivers.

The two-time champion bit back in Turkey when reporters asked him about his driving tactics from the previous race weekend at Sochi.

"I've been the idiot many times this year when I was overtaken by drivers who were off the track," Spaniard Alonso, who turned 40 in July, said.

"There was never any action from the stewards, and there were no questions about it at the next race."

OPINION | Is Fernando Alonso right: 'Different rules apply to different people' in F1?

He said the media questioning "confirms many things" - including his theory that "some rules only apply to certain people".

Alonso claims, for example, that Japanese driver Yuki Tsunoda has been penalised twice this year for crossing the pitlane line. At the same time, Briton Lando Norris escaped without penalty for an apparent breach at Sochi.

"Let's see who is at fault next time, what nationality he is, and what punishment he will receive," he said.

But Masi, F1's race director, said when asked about Alonso's comments: "I am not dealing with accusations like that.

"Well, every driver has the right to give their opinion. But the regulations are the same for everyone."

The Australian vehemently denies that stewards would look at the identity or nationality of a particular driver when deciding whether a penalty should apply and how severe it is.

"The stewards are an independent panel which examines each incident by themselves," said Masi.

"They do it with all the information and data that is available to them and then make a decision."

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Brought to you by
Voting Booth
Who do you feel was at fault for Verstappen and Hamilton's Italian GP crash?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Verstappen
25% - 1179 votes
Hamilton
42% - 1941 votes
They were both at fault
33% - 1533 votes
Vote