Abu Dhabi Grand Prix: It’s Time To Move On

Written By Uche Dozie

The Abu Dhabi race of 2021 definitely will go down in history of F1 as a memorable one due to it anticlimactic end when it was suppose to crown a spectacular season of the sport which meant to gone down the wire.

The Yas Marina Circuit was to decide if Dutch Driver of Red Bull, Max Verstappen will win his first title or the British driver Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes will be coasting home with record breaking eighth titles after an end to end situation by the two drivers.

The race ended with Verstappen winning the title; a title he would have merited after winning more races than any other driver, but the feat was dented by a controversial call from the former F1 race director Michael Masi which disadvantaged Lewis who was at the verge of victory.

The incident will later escalate into a reported “disillusionment” for Hamilton who stayed away from the sport for months, war of words from the two teams’ principals, fans hullabaloo and ultimately the sack of Michael Masi prior to the beginning of the new season which in itself raised dust from different quarters especially F1drivers.

The race without mincing words has seen drivers divided in their stances with Sebastian Vettel, Lando Norris and Verstappen stating the race was ok and Masi should not be blamed.

George Russell, who was racing for another team as at the time and who was to become Vatteri Bottas replacement for Mercedes took to Twitter to express his disbelief after the race.

“Max is an absolutely fantastic driver who has had an incredible season and I have nothing but huge respect for him, but what just happened is absolutely unacceptable.

“I cannot believe what we’ve just seen.”

Besides, there were death treats to the life of Nicholas Latifi whose late crash had called for a restart to the race leading to the decision taken by Masi which saw Verstappen win.

The driver revealed he hired security on a trip to London as he felt he and his family were in danger following the threats.


In all these, the sport must move on and the winners or losers must put the past behind them and give the fans a thrilling 2022 season as they always do.

Mercedes boss, Totto Wolff and Red Bull’s boss Christian Horner, the major characters in the crisis, have realised the need to let the Abu Dhabi event be in the past as they surge on to a greater season that starts 20th March.

“Maybe we have different opinions, but that’s behind us now,” Horner said as they spoke side-by-side at a press conference in Barcelona, where the F1 paddock is currently in pre-season testing.

“We saw a great battle last year from the first race to the last. That has been hugely important for the rise in popularity of Formula 1.” Horner said.

Wolff replied by agreeing to the Red Bull’s team principal’s comment.

I agree with Christian that we need to move on.

“There has been so much talk about Abu Dhabi that it came to a point that it is really damaging for all of us stakeholders of Formula 1 and we have closed the chapter and moved on,” the Mercedes boss said.

“Now it is about 2022. The game is on again, all points are [reset] to zero and there are new opportunities and new risks.”

The pre-season testing has started and one can feel the excitement building up. At the end of the season, we hope to see a season that will end without rancour as to who wins the title.

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