Mercedes files protest against FIA regarding final lap safety car decisions in Saudi Grand Prix. Max Verstappen won the Formula One championship by beating Lewis Hamilton.

Mercedes filed a formal complaint with the FIA regarding decisions made during the Saudi Grand Prix final lap. Red Bull’s Max Vertappen won that race in the last moments of its run over Lewis Hamilton.    

Toto Wolff of Mercedes is believed to be angry at Michael Masi, race director for Michael Masi over the decision to remove the safety car. This was due in part Nicholas Latifi’s accident. 

Mercedes and Wolff claimed that rules regarding lapped cars not being allowed to unlap were incorrectly applied by Masi, who removed the safety vehicle with only one lap left to permit the race to be finished as a contest. 

Mercedes have filed a protest with the FIA over the breath-taking finale of the Saudi Grand Prix

Mercedes filed a complaint with the FIA about the breathtaking finale to the Saudi Grand Prix

‘No Mikey! This was not right. After deciding to take out the safety car, Wolff shouted at Masi on the team radio. 

Red Bull chief Christian Horner acknowledged that Verstappen made some good money off the safety car after the race but said Masi had the right decision to get it removed for the final lap. Wolff was not impressed.

‘Ofcourse he (Toto), would do that (disagree). But it’s unheard of to leave the cars unlapped,’ Horner told Sky Sports.

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff berated race director Michael Masi over the team radio

Toto Wolff (Mercedes team principal) slammed Michael Masi, race director, over team radio

‘You could see they wanted to get the race going again but they don’t need to catch up the back of the paddock so they made absolutely the right call. 

‘(They were) Difficult circumstances for the stewards, we’re all putting pressure on them, but they called it right.’

Formula One regulations stipulate that Mercedes could file a protest within 30 minutes of the end of each race.