Suspension or all points: FIA's Masi sends out collision warning ahead of F1 title showdown

accreditation
0:00
play article
Subscribers can listen to this article
Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton during the 2021 Italian Grand Prix
Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton during the 2021 Italian Grand Prix
Peter Van Egmond

Formula One drivers could face suspension or lose all their points for driving in an unsportsmanlike manner, race director Michael Masi has warned ahead of Sunday's title-deciding battle at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Mercedes Lewis Hamilton, 36, and his 24-year-old Red Bull rival Max Verstappen head into the floodlit finale at the Yas Marina track level on points but Verstappen ahead 9-8 on wins, which would make him champion if both fail to score.

The pair have collided three times this season, including at the last race in Saudi Arabia, raising concerns about a thrilling season ending with a collision.

However, outlining the articles of the sport's International Sporting Code relating to "unsportsmanlike" conduct and the penalties for such behaviour, Masi sent a clear warning that such a scenario could result in severe consequences.

"In particular I would like to remind you of the following articles detailed below," the Australian said in his event notes on Thursday.

He singled out Article 12.2.1l which deals with "any infringement of the principles of fairness in competition, behaviour in an unsportsmanlike manner or attempt to influence the result of a competition in a way that is contrary to sporting ethics."

Masi also mentioned Article 12.4.5 which covers penalties stewards could impose including "suspension for one or more competitions, withdrawal of points for the championship, cup, challenge, trophy, series."

Verstappen, in particular, has drawn scrutiny for his uncompromising wheel-to-wheel racing.



Do you think Max and Lewis will avoid taking each other out at the season finale on Sunday? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.



Stewards took a dim view of his defensive tactics against Hamilton in Jeddah and found him predominantly at fault for triggering the collision, handing him two time penalties totalling 15 seconds.

After the race in Jeddah, 1996 world champion Damon Hill told Sky Sports the governing FIA needed to warn Verstappen and Hamilton of the consequences should a collision between them decide the title.

"There is a precedent that was set in the championship in 1997 where (Michael) Schumacher's points were taken away from him," he said.

"So if we do have a (collision) situation, I think the FIA should make the teams and drivers know in advance what they are likely to do."

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can 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. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Brought to you by
Voting Booth
Do you think Mercedes will return to form later in the 2022 F1 season after two poor races?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Yes, don't discredit them.
34% - 498 votes
Who cares, F1 is exciting again!
43% - 638 votes
No, it's Ferrari's turn to dominate again.
23% - 338 votes
Vote