Mercedes were left fuming following the contentious safety car decision of FIA race director Michael Masi which cost Hamilton the championship – and led to title rival Max Verstappen clinching his maiden title.
Fans of the sport have called for change and for Masi to lose his job, but the Mercedes team principal says more needs to be done than just replacing the Australian.
“It’s a bigger problem, my values are simply not compatible with the decisions that were made,” said Wolff, per the Spanish branch of Motorsport.com.
“It is not just about replacing the race director. The whole decision-making system must be improved. It’s one thing to drive hard and have different points of view between drivers and teams, that’s normal.
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“But inconsistent decisions inevitably lead to controversy, much of it totally unnecessary.”
Several controversial decisions were made by Masi and the FIA throughout the season, some of which both Mercedes and Red Bull benefited from, but none were more significant than the final big decision of the season.
“This last decision had the biggest impact, and from a sports perspective, it was catastrophic because it decided the World Championship,” Wolff said.
Hamilton was cruising to an unprecedented eighth world title, having led Red Bull title rival Verstappen by 11 seconds going into the remaining laps.
But a late Nicholas Latifi crash dramatically changed the landscape of the race and the title battle.
The safety car was brought onto the track and Verstappen opted for a change in tyres.
FIA race director Michael Masi initially instructed that lapped cars could not overtake the safety vehicle until it left the track, meaning there would not have been time for Verstappen to get behind his rival.
However, Masi later controversially changed his mind, allowing the cars between Hamilton and Verstappen to unlap themselves before ordering the safety car off the track.
Therefore, the Dutchman could get on the British driver’s tail before overtaking him in a one-lap shootout, benefiting from driving on far newer tyres.
There were still more cars that should have been able to unlap themselves, according to the rules.
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If these rules had been followed, then the race would likely have finished behind a safety car as it was the final lap, and as Hamilton was in the lead, he would have been crowned champion.
Since his interview immediately after the season’s last race, Hamilton has not spoken out either in person or on social media and has even unfollowed everyone on instagram.
His younger brother Nicolas has now opened up on why the seven-time world champion has decided to step away from social media channels.
“I think he is just having a bit of a social media break, which I don’t blame him for,” Nicolas explained to fans during an exchange on streaming platform Twitch.
“Social media can be a very toxic place. But he’s cool though. He’s fine.”