“Very clear Max was off-track”: FIA chief clarifies penalty that saw Verstappen lose 1 point

FIA Formula One Race Director Michael Masi is absolutely certain of his decision to award the extra point for the fastest lap to Valtteri Bottas after taking it away from Max Verstappen.

According to the FIA chief, Verstappen had an unrivaled advantage by driving off-track while at Turn 14.

“As per the event notes and following a review of what happened in Friday in particular, Turn 14 was being used far more… it wasn’t an issue in 2020 but became one in 2021,” Masi is quoted.

The race director allowed all drivers to use the red and white kerb in the same way as in Turn 5 starting from Saturday.

So what exactly does this mean?

“They were told if they gained a lasting advantage out of reach of those [kerbs], being overtaking a car, faster in a mini-sector, whatever it may have been, that it will be looked at,” he explains further.

When it comes to Verstappen, he was well ahead the rest of the grid in the relevant mini-sector.

“And having looked at it post-race it was very clear Max was off-track and faster in that mini-sector than anyone and set the fastest lap of the race which is a world championship point,” Masi concludes saying that he had no other choice other than deny Verstappen that point.

Do you think Verstappen penalty was a fair decision? Let us know in the comments below!

Read More: “Unworthy of Formula 1”: Verstappen pins blame on Portimao circuit after qualifying woes

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