Court Ruling: Mercedes Would Have Lost Abu Dhabi 2021 Case

The 2021 Mercedes Formula One team chose not to appeal the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix result that controversially awarded Max Verstappen his first world title, and a precedent case in Spain suggests that such an appeal might not have succeeded, especially considering the FIA’s International Court of Appeal upheld a similar race director’s decision despite a procedural mistake.


‣ The 2021 Mercedes Formula One team decided not to appeal the result of the controversial Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, which led to Max Verstappen winning his first world title, leaving questions about the potential outcome of an appeal.

‣ A precedent case in Spain involving a GT race and a race director’s mistake suggests that appeals against race results due to procedural errors might not be successful, as the FIA’s International Court of Appeal upheld the original race result despite the error.

‣ F1 race director Michael Masi made a mistake during the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix by not allowing all cars on Lewis Hamilton‘s lead lap to return to the same racing lap after a safety car procedure, which played a crucial role in Verstappen’s victory over Hamilton.

‣ Despite the controversy and the acknowledged mistake by Masi, Mercedes chose not to pursue legal action, and the International Court of Appeal’s precedent indicates that such an appeal might not have been successful.

Oh, the drama of the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. It was something else, wasn’t it? Mercedes, with their sleek silver arrows, decided to let it be. They chose not to challenge Max Verstappen’s first world title win. But, oh, the whispers and the what-ifs that followed.

What if they had appealed? Ever thought about that?

Well, let’s take a little detour to Spain for a sec. Picture this: a GT race, adrenaline pumping, engines roaring. Then, oops, the race director slips up. The safety car chaos ensues, and the racers are all jumbled up. Not the plan, right? One team got pretty heated, took the matter to court in Spain, and bam, they won. But the victory was short-lived. The other teams weren’t having it. They took their grievances to the FIA’s International Court of Appeal. And guess what? The original decision stood. The mess-up was officially a non-issue.

Now, back to Abu Dhabi. Michael Masi, the man with the plan, or rather, the mistake. He didn’t let all of Lewis Hamilton’s lap buddies catch up after the safety car dance. Just the ones between him and Verstappen. With the finish line in sight, Verstappen seized his chance. He zoomed past Hamilton, snatching the win and the championship. Mercedes was fuming but decided to let bygones be bygones. No appeal. But one can’t help but wonder, what if they had? Given the Spanish saga, maybe it was a lost cause from the start.

So, there you have it. A tale of speed, strategy, and a sprinkle of controversy. Just another day in the world of Formula One.

Albert Ramirez
Albert Ramirez
Albert Ramirez is a senior writer at With a passion for motorsports, Albert brings a unique perspective to the world of Formula One. With over five years of experience as a sports reporter, he has honed his skills in capturing the essence of the sport.

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