FIA race director Michael Masi shrugs off Nikita Mazepin, who was shown a black and white flag last weekend for a dangerous defensive play on Yuki Tsunoda.
This year, Nikita Mazepin has not made herself very popular with several drivers. In Russia, it was Yuki Tsunoda who berated the Russian after Mazepin defended very aggressively when the Japanese wanted to pass him. At the last moment, Mazepin slammed the door, forcing Tsunoda into the anchors.
It produced a black and white flag, a warning flag, for Mazepin. Masi explains. “In turn twelve, Nikita slammed the door very late when Yuki wanted to overtake him with DRS. We have already set warning flags for that and we will continue to do so. It is unsportsmanlike behavior and we will not tolerate that,” the race director said in a statement conversation with Fpal.
Despite the umpteenth time that Mazepin gets into trouble and his colleagues berate him, Masi doesn’t want to make it bigger. “He must have visited the stewards a few times, but there must have been other drivers who come there as often or perhaps more often. So it does not worry me.”
“We look at and investigate each incident individually. If it is worth investigating, we forward it to the stewards. They decide on the basis of the evidence they have whether a penalty is necessary. We assess incidents accordingly of what happens, not on someone’s racing style.”