Since the Max Verstappen drama stemming from the end of last weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix, the FIA has said it would investigate qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix if a formal complaint were made.
This all comes after Verstappen refused to follow team orders when they asked him to let his teammate Sergio Perez pass on the final lap of the race. Verstappen had been told early in the race to pass Perez to take some points away from Alpine’s Fernando Alonso and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc on the condition that he would return the place before the end of the race as Perez was still up for it fights second place in the drivers’ championship.
Verstappen said over the team radio that they know his reasons and shouldn’t ask him again. Since that comment, many people have speculated that he was referring to qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix when Perez crashed while ahead of Verstappen, meaning he qualified higher and then won the race. The opinion of many fans is that Perez crashed on purpose to put himself in a better position than his teammate.
The FIA has said they would be happy to investigate the incident if a formal complaint is made, but no complaint has yet been made.
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Speaking to the press about the situation, FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem said:
“I haven’t had anyone say we want to investigate this from our side.
“But if there’s something to investigate, we’re more than happy. One thing I would really say, I’m not shy or scared to conduct or go into it if there’s a problem. I won’t hide
“I’ll even raise my hand and say [if] There is a problem with the FIA. Otherwise, if I can’t do that, you’ll never improve and you’ll never advance. I can guarantee that.”
If the incident were investigated and found intentional, it would breach the rules of Article 37.5 of the Regulations, which states:
“Any driver taking part in a practice session which, in the opinion of the stewards, stops unnecessarily on the track or unnecessarily impedes another driver shall be subject to the penalties set out in Article 37.4.”
Additionally, it could be considered unsportsmanlike to intentionally fall in order to have a red flag. According to Article 12.2.1.c of the Sport Code, “any fraudulent conduct or action that harms the interests of a competition or the interests of motorsport in general.”