In sport, you have the joy of winning and the emptiness of losing. The manner in which Lewis Hamilton lost the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, and with it the 2021 World Championship, on the last lap will go down in Formula One infamy. If it hasn’t already. For Hamilton, the emptiness of having lost a race that he dominated must have been more akin to jumping into a bottomless pit of losers. One can only imagine. But Hamilton swallowed a bitter, bitter pill, showing sportsmanship and class by accepting a fairy tale ending that was written apparently by the Race Director for the benefit of the Max Verstappen story. That’s how it appears from the neutral vantage point. The 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was a messy end to a battle royale championship. It was a last-lap custard pie in the face.
But that is the result Toto. Toto, once you have appealed a stewards decision and it has subsequently been rejected, that’s it, the appeal will not be overturned. No matter how much you protest Toto, even your appeal of the appeal will also fail. This is the modus operandi of the FIA. The FIA will regurgitate some little-known article hidden under a little-known article to checkmate you, Toto.
So why is Toto Wolff leading the charge at Mercedes to get the Abu Dhabi race result reversed, and install Hamilton as the winner? Well, he is the leader, the team principal and the race ended with a manufactured result that makes an XFactor contestant look original. Toto is all too aware that a counter appeal will fail. For him, this is about keeping the conversation going and putting pressure on Race Director Michael Masi.
Ultimately Wolff would like to see Massi removed from his position. He can’t do it himself, obviously. But he can continue to put legal, and direct, and indirect media pressure on F1’s Race Director. But knowing the FIA, Masi is safe, they will stick to their guns. Verstappen deserved to win the driver’s title, but not this way, not in this manner.