The Las Vegas GP is finally over and done with, but the controversies it has left in its wake are still bothering the F1 town. Even though the Main Race on the famous Vegas Strip turned out to be one of the most interesting in this season, the start to the weekend in the Sin City could have been a lot better. Right from the get-go, the FIA had to come under fire due to their questionable decisions regarding the FP1 session as well as the one that followed it. And it all began when Carlos Sainz collided with a manhole cover on the road that was supposed to be welded shut but was overlooked by the organizers.
Sainz’s incident involving the pothole caused the FP1 session to get called off. His SF-23 sustained massive damage as well, leading to the Ferrari Boss Frederic Vasseur calling out the FIA for their ‘unacceptable’ oversight. Now, the Maranello outfit’s CEO John Elkann has entered the scene. He was present in Las Vegas when Carlos’s car got damaged from the crash with a manhole cover that was only left there because of the organizers’ carelessness. He was also aware that Carlos Sainz had to accept a 10-place grid penalty for changing the parts of his damaged car despite the crash in FP1 not being his fault. But he had stayed silent through it all.
Now, Elkann is speaking out against the FIA for wrongfully levying a penalty on Sainz for something that was most evidently their doing. He has demanded clarity over the rules that allow the stewards to place a 10-place grid penalty on a Formula 1 driver.
John Elkan said, as quoted by the BBC.
From the regulatory standpoint in terms of rules and applications and what we have seen with the budget caps, those are areas where you’d like to have more clarity.
John Elkann hits a nerve when he fires at the FIA by bringing up their failures at the 2021 Abu Dhabi GP
The 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will always remain a dark spot in the history of Formula 1 as it showed the gross misjudgements on the FIA’s part. The results of the race could have been different if the Race Director at that time, Michael Masi, had not ruled in favor of the lapped cars getting a chance to unlap themselves when the safety car deployment was over after Nicholas Latifi’s crash. Unfortunately, Masi’s orders were carried out and Lewis Hamilton lost out on what could be a record-setting eighth World Championship win.
Even today, several people who are key figures in Formula 1 consider Abu Dhabi GP to be a grave mistake. John Elkann happens to be one of them. The Italian took it as an example while warning the stewards about needlessly levying penalties on the racers as they did on Sainz at the Las Vegas GP.
You don’t want things to happen like the 2021 championship, how that ended up. You don’t want to have situations like the ones here in Vegas, where you get penalised 10 places.
In other news, Charles Leclerc dropped some new pictures while he is now on the way to Abu Dhabi for this weekend’s race. He posted his photos as he went around the APM Monaco store in Dubai. The Ferrari racer endorses the luxury jewelry brand and he has been seen wearing their masterpieces on several occasions.