Saturday, October 1 2022

Michael Masi lands his first job since his ignominious exit from Formula 1 as the former race director returns to V8 Supercars – and is being hailed as ‘an independent, strong and rugged leader’ despite his role in Abu Dhabi’s farce l ‘last year

  • Michael Masi landed his first motorsport job since leaving Formula 1
  • The Australian, 44, quit F1 last month after being removed from his role as race director
  • Masi has now been appointed commissioner for V8 supercars
  • He was called a ‘strong and sturdy leader’ despite the Abu Dhabi prank

Michael Masi has landed a new job after his Formula 1 exit with the Australian named new chairman of the V8 Supercars Commission.

Masi, the former F1 race director, returned to Australia earlier this year after his role in last year’s controversial decider’s arrival in Abu Dhabi, where Max Verstappen snatched the title from Lewis Hamilton.

Reports last month suggested the 44-year-old was in the frame to replace Neil Crompton as chairman of the Supercars Commission, who ended his ten-year tenure in the role this month.

Michael Masi took his first job since leaving the FIA ​​with V8 Supercars

And now the racing circuit has confirmed that Masi will take over from Crompton and be responsible for overseeing the sporting and technical rules of the Australian series.

“I view this role as a continuation of the incredible work already done by Neil and the Commission to usher Supercars into a whole new era with the introduction of the Gen3 Chevrolet Camaro and Ford Mustang,” Masi said in a statement.

“I am very proud to have been appointed to this role and look forward to working with the sport’s key stakeholders to ensure the future is an exciting one for our teams, our partners, our sponsors and above all the fans.”

Supercars CEO Shane Howard welcomed Masi’s appointment, describing the 44-year-old as a “strong and rugged independent leader”.

Masi was at the heart of Max Verstappen's controversial World Championship win in Abu Dhabi

Masi was at the heart of Max Verstappen’s controversial World Championship win in Abu Dhabi

“I am delighted that the Commission has appointed Michael to this important post for the sport,” he said.

“The role of the President of the Commission must be that of an independent, strong and robust leader. They must effectively manage the Commission and its process, negotiate compromises if necessary and be a good communicator.

“Michael has worked closely with Supercars team owners, managers and stakeholders for many years and returns to Australia with a wealth of experience and leadership that will be invaluable in guiding our sport into the future.

“I’ve met very few people with such a deep understanding of the industry combined with incredible passion. Michael will be an excellent successor to Neil who has done an outstanding job.

“We welcome Michael back to the top of the race here in Australia and look forward to working closely with him in his role as Commission Chairman.”

Supercars CEO Shane Howard called Masi a

Supercars CEO Shane Howard called Masi a ‘strong and rugged leader’ despite the prank

Masi’s first round in his new role will be at the Auckland SuperSprint on the weekend of September 10-11.

He received huge criticism for his race decisions which played a significant role in Verstappen overtaking Hamilton on the final lap to win the world championship.

Masi called the safety car on the closing shots, then controversially allowed the stragglers separating Hamilton and Verstappen to unroll, resulting in a one-lap shootout.

After an investigation, the FIA ​​ruled that Masi had made a “human error” but acted in good faith. He was replaced by Eduardo Freitas and Niells Wittich for the 2022 season and opted to move to Australia to be closer to his family.

Masi broke his silence last month, revealing he received death threats and “despicable” abuse upon arrival in Abu Dhabi.

He was assistant race director at Supercars before joining the FIA.


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