Controversy in F1 as Lewis Hamilton’s petition to strip Max Verstappen of championship title gains 100,000 signatures

A petition on calling for the result of the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to be overturned and the victory given to Lewis Hamilton has reached 100,000 signatures. Hamilton fan Patel Gordon-Bennett created the petition and has gained significant media attention for attempting to reverse Max Verstappen’s controversial win at the Yas Marina circuit in December 2021.

The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was the final race of the 2021 Formula One season and a straight shootout between the two title contenders, Hamilton and Verstappen. The pair started the race on equal points, and whoever finished higher would ultimately win the championship. Hamilton was in a commanding position and just five laps away from winning a record eighth world title when a crash by Nicholas Latifi caused a safety car, creating last-minute drama.

Race director Michael Masi controversially allowed lapped cars to overtake the safety car to let one final lap of racing. With Verstappen on fresher and faster soft compound tyres, he was able to speed past the Mercedes of Hamilton, taking the win and the championship.

Verstappen’s victory was widely regarded as fair, and he did nothing wrong. However, it remains a sore spot and a significant talking point for Hamilton fans. Despite the result of the 2021 championship being set in stone for almost 16 months, fans continue to show their dissatisfaction with the outcome.

The petition, which aims to overturn the result and award the victory to Hamilton, reached the 100,000 signature milestone on Wednesday, attracting significant attention from the media and racing fans. Its creator, Gordon-Bennett, wrote: “I believe that justice was not served on Sunday, December 12, 2021, when the FIA stewards denied Lewis Hamilton of his win of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.”

The petition has sparked debate among racing fans, with some arguing that the result should stand, while others believe that Hamilton was unfairly denied the victory. The controversy surrounding the race has also put the spotlight on the role of race directors and stewards in deciding the outcome of races, with some questioning whether they have too much influence over the final result.

Regardless of the petition’s outcome, the controversy surrounding the race is likely to continue, with many fans still feeling aggrieved at the result. The 2022 Formula One season is already underway, and both Hamilton and Verstappen are expected to compete again for the championship title, setting the stage for another thrilling racing season.

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