May 19 - The FIA's new president is stamping his authority over Toto Wolff and Lewis Hamilton, according to well-known Russian F1 commentator Alexey Popov.

A British newspaper claims seven time world champion Hamilton and Mercedes boss Wolff were vocally upset when Mohammed Ben Sulayem suggested axed race director Michael Masi may soon get another job.

"Ben Sulayem said that two race directors is not enough - that a third is needed and he needs such an experienced specialist as Michael Masi," Popov, the commentator for the Russian broadcaster Match TV, said.

"It is said that in the Wolff and Hamilton camp, this caused a shock," he added.

But according to Popov, the new FIA president's move - as well as his clampdown on the wearing of jewellery in the cockpit - is part of a push to establish authority over the Mercedes-Hamilton camp.

"I see it as Sulayem saying 'Stop, guys. Stop showing me who's in charge here, otherwise I'll show you'. How true this is, I can't say," Popov admits.

"But in the context of this whole story, it does look plausible."

While Hamilton focuses on the jewellery clampdown, many think he has taken his eye off the ball on the racetrack - resulting in falling behind his new teammate George Russell.

"Russell is a very good driver," said former Mercedes boss Norbert Haug. "But I would never underestimate Lewis," he told Sky Deutschland.

"Anyone who thinks he's throwing in the towel is wrong. A world champion is of course criticised if he doesn't do his usual job, and he's currently behind his teammate.

"But I wouldn't be surprised if that is no longer the case in Barcelona," Haug added.


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26 F1 Fan comments on “FIA now stamping authority over Hamilton and Mercedes?

  1. ReallyOldRacer

    This whole 'bling' controversy has been way overblown. There is a justifiable rule and Lewie is tilting at windmills. Obey the rule, STFU & drive, or move to LA and pursue your rap music desire. Jaxwad and Awarddork can concentrate on telling us how much better he is than Jay-Z. IMO, the knight has, sadly, severely damaged his racing legacy and needs to move on.

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    • Nobodysperfect

      I must say the FIA is pushing it way to far with this. In my opinion drivers must be free to choose their own risks and express themselves with tattoos, jewellery, talking, driving, etc, as long as they don't jeopardise others.

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  2. buachaill ban

    its about time the FIA enforced the rules.its the same for everyone .if fines dont have the desired effect then points deducted would make mercedes take notice.shamilton and tonto are making the whole show a joke.cant be helping MB sell to many motors except to a few fags maybe

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  3. Swedr

    Fines are not relevant with a huge salary. Points or disqualification are the only teeth here. We will see, but the subject has been best to death.

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  4. CanadianEh

    I've mentioned that all this chest-beating from Mercedes Benz, specifically Dame Lucille and Adolf, distracts the players from the singleness-of-purpose so necessary in any Premier League sport - Formula 1 being a shining example.

    This all started when all the Woke bullsh_t got dragged into the sport by Lucille. Then came the entitlement common to he and his ilk.

    And now Ben Sulayem and Adolf with their immense ego's, are wagging their dicks at each other and all the sordid drama is corrupting the zeitgeist of this whole era of F1 racing.

    I yearn for the days when F1 drivers were fat and the tires were skinny. Much simpler, more rewarding and certainly less distracted or frustrating.

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  5. smokey

    Mohammed Ben Sulayem needs to get out of the weeds and realise that as president his role is to and provide direction for the organisation as a whole, not get involved in petty arguments with competitors. Next he will be conducting inspections of the toilets! These minor issues of small personal jewellery should be left to scrutineering by race directors and team managers.

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      • Blo

        Agreed, but why is it suddenly a problem, hate to agree with Dr Helmet but it’s never been a problem before. They’ll be checking for sharp toenails next.
        Have just done a charity Hillclimb, non competitive so crash helmets banned, road legal cars only BUT the Uk Motor sports association has made a competition licence compulsory for all drivers AND passengers. How can they do that? Because it’s at a designated motor sport venue. Big brother is watching.

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        • ReallyOldRacer

          Blo', in the early 70's JYS instigated a safety crusade that changed, right or wrong, racing forever. Since then SAFETY has been the most used word in our sport. The kerfuffle following the Donohue death decades ago proved that manufacturers, teams, ancillary equipment providers and even race venues suffer exposure. Can F1 drivers race historic rep's at Monaco, no. Can you sponsor an unregulated hillclimb at a racing venue, no. Good or bad.....it is. Big brother...or common sense?

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          • Blo

            I know ROR I was there, just call me a grumpy old fart. Sadly in the end the safety lobby combined with the environmental lobby will eliminate motor sport completely. Fortunately young people will still have horse riding, mountaineering,oceonRacing and probably a few other dangerous sports to test themselves against but probably not for long.

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          • smokey

            ROR, you are absolutely correct about JYS's safety crusade. As you probably recall, the reason JYS initiated the drive for safety was due to the lack of medical support and track safety barriers at Spa when he had his big crash and almost perished. However, the drive for safety has degraded with Mohammed's nit picking and nonsense about personal jewellery.

          • ReallyOldRacer

            Hard to grasp (my age, not the rules) but the jewelry restriction predates even the beginning of Sir Jackie's crusade. I was there. We bitched about it then.....and the beat goes on. LOL

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  6. shroppyfly

    If its in the rule book, then its a rule, end of discussion. we can argue the toss whether it should be amended/improved /removed another day, but TODAY that's the rule.....

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