F1 theory emerges that Masi let Verstappen have last chance to beat Hamilton for Netflix ‘Drive to Survive’ finale

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F1 RACE DIRECTOR Michael Masi is under fire after his controversial decision allowed Max Verstappen to win the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and the world title.

Masi was in charge of deciding how the safety car would be deployed towards the end of the race and he allowed her to leave the track with one lap to go.

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FIA director Michael Masi is under fire from F1 fansCredit: Getty
Max Verstappen had the controversial chance to win the F1 title after the end of the safety car

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Max Verstappen had the controversial chance to win the F1 title after the end of the safety carCredit: Alamy
Lewis Hamilton led the entire Abu Dhabi Grand Prix until the last lap

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Lewis Hamilton led the entire Abu Dhabi Grand Prix until the last lapCredit: Getty Images – Getty

But even more controversially, it allowed the run-in cars to overtake Lewis Hamilton, putting Verstappen into second place.

Except after the restart, the Dutchman’s margin over race leader Hamilton was wiped out.

And after stopping to put on fresh, soft tyres, Verstappen found himself with a major advantage over Hamilton.

That Masi allowed this to happen infuriated many F1 fans, with some saying the decision was made to create more drama.

The final decisive race caught the eye of potential new fans, with a peak TV audience of 7.4million watching Verstappen win the F1 title on Channel 4.

Ian Katz, Channel 4’s Chief Content Officer, said: “While many UK F1 fans will be disappointed with the outcome, it is fantastic that Channel 4 has been able to present this biting F1 2021 season finale at 4.4 million viewers for free and, in partnership with Sky, to an incredible peak audience of 7.4 million.


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“Following the return of Test cricket to free-to-air television, a remarkable Paralympic Games and the triumph of Emma Raducanu, it was the dramatic end to an extraordinary sporting year on Channel 4.”

Some fans also referenced Netflix’s “Drive To Survive” in their reviews, suggesting that Masi took the ending he did to reach the most dramatic conclusion of a season to remember.

The host of the American satirical program “The Daily Show”, Trevor Noah, even got involved in the online debate.

He tweeted: “Dreadful result for Lewis (Hamilton) but great result for F1.

“Championship decided the final race, with everyone arguing over online rules and a dramatic end to the next season of Drive to Survive.

“Better to be a controversial sport than a boring sport.”

Another F1 fan added: “Sack Michael Masi immediately, the FIA ​​just fixed a race and threw in the regulations to make it a good Drive to Survive episode. ABSOLUTE CLOWNS.

And a third said: “Formula 1 has become the WWE of motorsports.

“Max Verstappen is the new John Cena and Masi is Vince Macman. The race is scripted and it’s starting to look like Drive to Survive in real life.

“Mercedes should leave F1 and focus on Formula E. Lewis has been robbed.”

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