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Massa agrees to skip Italian GP amid authorized course of over 2008 F1 title

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Massa is considered one of a number of former drivers employed by the F1 organisation in ambassadorial roles, with the job involving attending a sure variety of races per season in logoed shirts and enterprise duties equivalent to meet and greets within the Paddock Membership.

Others to have related preparations are Mika Hakkinen, Jacques Villeneuve and David Coulthard.

Nevertheless, issues turned difficult after Massa began a authorized course of towards F1 and the FIA associated to the 2008 world championship and the affect of the Singapore GP ‘Crashgate’ affair on the end result.

As a former Ferrari driver and native favorite, Massa was as a result of attend this weekend’s Italian GP at Monza beneath his common association, with journey and lodge bills taken care of by F1.

Nevertheless, a supply has confirmed {that a} dialog befell throughout which it was mutually agreed that being at a race as an F1 ambassador was not applicable within the present circumstances, though it was additionally made clear that he can proceed to return to any race as a personal particular person.

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It is understood that Massa himself might have recognised that his presence would inevitably set off media curiosity that might have made it onerous for him to maneuver across the paddock.

Felipe Massa

Picture by: Alexander Trienitz / Motorsport Images

Massa misplaced 2008 the title to Lewis Hamilton on the ultimate lap of his dwelling race in Brazil, however the factors he misplaced in Singapore – the place he retired after dragging the gasoline hose out of the Ferrari pits when he stopped in the course of the security automotive triggered by Nelson Piquet Jr’s crash – had a vital affect.

Earlier this yr, former F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone indicated that the Piquet saga was identified inside F1 and FIA circles earlier than the top of the season, and an archive interview with the late FIA race director Charlie Whiting additionally emerged backed up that timing.

Final month, Massa’s legal professionals wrote to FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem and FOM CEO Stefano Domenicali with a Letter Earlier than Declare, stating that he was the “sufferer of a conspiracy”.

They prompt that Massa had misplaced tens of millions in earnings, in addition to struggling “ethical” and “reputational” damages, because of the Singapore affair.

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