Felipe Massa handed massive blow in attempt to strip Lewis Hamilton of title

Nelson Piquet Jr. purposefully crashed at the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix.

British ex-racing driver Tiff Needell has told Felipe Massa that “you can’t cancel” the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix, with the Brazilian currently looking into how he can have the race declared null and void.

It was at the 2008 Singapore GP that the infamous ‘Crashgate’ incident took place, where Nelson Piquet Jr. purposefully crashed to allow Renault team-mate Fernando Alonso to claim victory.

At the time, nobody knew that the crash happened on purpose, with it having not been discovered until 2009.

Hamilton, of course, went on to win the 2008 Drivers’ Championship, the first of his seven titles.

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However, if the results from the Singapore GP were discarded, then Massa would’ve been the World Champion.

As astonishing as this fact is, Needell doesn’t think the results from 2008 can be changed, with there being a metaphorical “time limit”.

“You can’t cancel it now. From that race on people ran tactics from the points that were on the board,” Needell told Express Sport.

“If he’d appealed for the race to be null and void but I guess they didn’t know it was deliberate. As soon as they had announced it, if they had put an appeal in then, then maybe. There’s a time limit.”

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The reason why the 2008 title has resurfaced is because of recent comments made by former F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone, with the 92-year-old having admitted that F1 bosses should’ve “cancelled the race in Singapore”.

It’s because of Ecclestone’s comments that Massa is exploring every possible way he could have the result from 2008 changed, given that the Singapore GP “was supposed to be cancelled” and would’ve made Massa World Champion.

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“After 15 years, we hear that the [former] owner of the category says that he found out in 2008, together with the president of the FIA, and they did nothing [so as] to not tarnish the name of F1,” Massa said.

“This is very sad, to know the result of this race was supposed to be cancelled and I would have a title. In the end, I was the one who lost the most with this result.

“So, we are going after it to understand all this. There are rules, and there are many things that, depending on the country, you cannot go back after 15 years to resolve a situation.”