Wolff jokes he’s ‘always happy’ after key meeting on FIA probe into Abu Dhabi GP drama

Mohammed ben Sulayem met with team bosses earlier this week to discuss the FIA's initial findings from their investigation.

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff and Red Bull boss Christian Horner appeared in an equivocal mood as they left the FIA’s headquarters in London on Monday following a meeting with of the F1 Commission.

New FIA president Mohammed ben Sulayem is leading a taskforce into the controversial events of the Abu Dhabi Grand prix last year, in which race director Michael Masi contradicted an earlier decision by allowing just five lapped runners past a late Safety Car.

This allowed Max Verstappen to pass Sir Lewis Hamilton on the very last lap to claim his maiden world title, and Mercedes were outraged.

Wolff told Masi that the closing stages of the race were “so not right,” before the eight-time constructors’ champions dropped an appeal into the championship standings.

Ben Sulayem then held a meeting with all of the team principals on Monday to examine what the governing body has found so far in their investigation, and what approaches they will be taking going forward.

“The FIA President led detailed discussions of the 2021 FIA Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix,” the FIA said in a statement.

“Feedback from the Commission on matters raised will be incorporated into the President’s analysis and he will publicly present news of structural changes and action plan in the coming days.”

And on Thursday, the FIA president announced that Masi won’t continue to serve as Formula 1’s race director in 2022, though he will be offered another role within the organisation.

Upon leaving the building after Monday’s meeting, Wolff was asked if he was happy with how it went.

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He simply replied: “Always happy.”

He was then questioned as to whether Hamilton will be content with what was discussed, and he simply smiled.

Horner was equally uninclined to give anything away as he left, with the pair keeping their cards close to their chest.

Ben Sulayem said he is pleased with the manner in which they both co-operated with each other and with the investigation.

“They were in line. I think it’s because of Valentine’s Day,” he quipped.

“They were close to each other and they were in a good mood, so that was good. I expected more entertainment but it was good to see the harmony between them.”

The FIA will conclude its investigation on 18 March, the weekend of the opening round of the 2022 season in Bahrain.