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Mercedes looking at Massa case with curiosity

Mercedes looking at Massa case with curiosity says wolff hamilton

Felipe Massa’s legal attempt to overturn the 2008 Formula 1 world championship is sure to set a precedent and Mercedes are watching “with curiosity” team boss Toto Wolff told reporters in Singapore on Friday.

Former Ferrari driver Massa lost that year’s title by a point to Lewis Hamilton, now at Mercedes and a seven-time world champion.

Perhaps triggered by revelations by former F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone, the 43-year-old Brazilian alleges a”conspiracy” denied him the 2008 F1 title because the sport’s leaders knew the Singapore Grand Prix that year was manipulated but took no action until a year later.

Renault driver Nelson Piquet Jr. revealed in 2009 that he had been told by team bosses to crash deliberately in Singapore, bringing out a safety car that helped teammate Fernando Alonso win. Massa, who had been leading until that point, failed to score after a bungled pitstop.

Wolff said of Massa’s legal claims: “They’re”interesting to follow. Clearly, it’s not something that anybody saw coming. The rules are pretty clear in F1. Is there a civil case behind it? It will certainly set a precedent, whatever it is. We’re looking from the sidelines with curiosity.”

Hamilton lost the 2021 F1 championship in controversial circumstances at the final race in Abu Dhabi to Red Bull’s Max Verstappen when the safety car procedure was tweaked by now-departed race director Michael Masi.

Wolff suggested that outcome could also be challenged if Massa were to succeed with his case: “The FIA commented on the 2021 race with a clear statement so that’s why we are looking at it with interest.”

The governing FIA said in March 2022 after an enquiry that “the results of the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and the FIA Formula One World Championship are valid, final and cannot now be changed.” (Reporting by Alan Baldwin)