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F1’s governing body makes first formal statement on progress of its Abu Dhabi probe since December 15; Analysis to be presented to the F1 Commission, which includes the teams, in early February ahead of rubber-stamping of “final decisions” by the World Motor Sport Council on March 18

Last Updated: 13/01/22 10:33pm

The FIA has detailed the timeframe for its inquiry into the controversial events of the Abu Dhabi GP, with the “outcome of the detailed analysis” to be presented to teams in February and “final decisions” announced on March 18.

Sky Sports revealed on Wednesday that the formal investigative stage of the inquiry had begun with new FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem taking a personal involvement in a matter that remains highly controversial a month on from the final race of the 2021 season when Lewis Hamilton lost the world title to Max Verstappen.

In its first formal statement on the topic since first announcing its review on December 15, the governing body said that the results of the investigation will first be presented to the F1 Commission, which comprises teams and other key stakeholders, in February.

Final decisions relating to the inquiry will then be made public on March 18 following ratification by the World Motor Sport Council in Bahrain, the day track action gets underway at the season’s first grand prix.

Lewis Hamilton’s future in the sport is understood to be linked to the outcome of the inquiry, with Mercedes wanting to see tangible results and steps for change after the sequence of contentious events under the late Safety Car in last season’s December 12 finale.

Ben Sulayem, elected as Jean Todt’s successor at the head of world motorsport five days after the Abu Dhabi race, has “launched a consultation with all F1 teams on various issues” including the events of the title decider.

The FIA confirmed that a meeting of the Sporting Advisory Committee on January 19 will include an item “dedicated to the use of the Safety Car”.

Craig Slater reports that Lewis Hamilton's return to Formula 1 hangs on the FIA findings on the last lap controversy at Abu Dhabi and how the FIA conducts itself going forward.

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Craig Slater reports that Lewis Hamilton’s return to Formula 1 hangs on the FIA findings on the last lap controversy at Abu Dhabi and how the FIA conducts itself going forward.

Craig Slater reports that Lewis Hamilton’s return to Formula 1 hangs on the FIA findings on the last lap controversy at Abu Dhabi and how the FIA conducts itself going forward.

“The following stage will be a shared discussion with all F1 drivers,” added the statement.

Peter Bayer, the FIA’s secretary general of motor sport who also now has responsibilities for the single-seater division, is heading up the process.

Ben Sulayem has asked Bayer for proposals to “review and optimise” the FIA’s F1 structure for the 2022 season.



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