Hughes gives take on Hamilton/FIA conflict – “Fans may be feeling a sense of deja-vu”

Prominent F1 writer Mark Hughes gave his take on the current Lewis Hamilton/FIA conflict, saying that it has shades of the infamous issue Ayrton Senna had.

Hamilton’s current silence has come after the highly controversial defeat he suffered at Abu Dhabi on the last race of the 2021 season. There are credible rumours that his future in the sport is uncertain, with him engaging in a standoff with those who wronged him.

The current situation sees the seven-time world champion not saying a word on social media about what transpired at Yas Marina or even about general things. His once-active social media life seems to have disappeared, and many are speculating that the FIA broke him a fair bit.

Hughes gave his take on the Hamilton/FIA conflict, saying that the whole thing seems very familiar to the Senna versus authorities feud.

In his article for the Race, Hughes wrote, “Anyone with Formula 1 memories stretching back as far as pre-season 1990 may be feeling a sense of deja-vu as the current stand-off between the FIA and Lewis Hamilton plays out.

Ayrton Senna Story
THAT infamous Senna-Prost incident. Source:

“Back then, Ayrton Senna had said publicly that he felt the governing body had manipulated the outcome of his ’89 world title battle with Alain Prost. He intimated that FISA president Jean-Marie Balestre had clearly favoured Prost.

“Balestre took great exception to this and it was announced that until Senna apologised for his remarks he would not be issued with a licence to race for 1990.”


“It seemed an odd decision given that the only alternative way he could have rejoined would have been to have initially gone against the direction of traffic in order to take the chicane,” he explained.

“The disqualification handed the title to Prost for with one race left – in Australia – Senna could no longer overcome his points deficit.

“An outraged Balestre summoned Senna and McLaren boss Ron Dennis to Paris to appear before the World Motorsport Council, with Senna accused of being in breach of the sporting code by deeds which ‘inflict moral injury and loss on the FIA, FISA, their members or executive officers.’

“The council voted to refuse Senna’s application for his 1990 racing licence until an apology was issued.”

Read more: Hughes highlights how COTA affected Hamilton and Verstappen – “Neither car was driven close to limits”

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