MARTIN SAMUEL: Max Verstappen’s last lap triumph in Abu Dhabi over Lewis Hamilton was a STOLEN title… by the stewards, the race director and by Formula One’s need for drama

Yet, in doing so, the sport appeared to reverse over the concept of fairness, of sporting justice and a level playing field. Michael Masi’s official title is race director, but isn’t he taking the second part of that role too much to heart?. He did that himself over one season and one very special final lap here. Michael Masi is the Australian who has been F1 race director since 2019. Hamilton had to go through those cars in real time, Verstappen didn’t. And for all the advantage handed him by Masi, Verstappen still had to make that final lap pass. ‘It’s a motor race, we went motor racing,’ Masi snapped at Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff when he first protested about the final lap. Hamilton deserved to win the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and, if doing so made him drivers’ champion, that was how it should be.

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