Toto Wolff Agrees He and Christian Horner ‘Overstepped’ in Emotive Radio Messages to Masi

Published 12/23/2021, 5:56 PM EST
Formula One F1 – Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – December 10, 2021 Mercedes Executive Director Toto Wolff and Red Bull Racing Team Principal Christian Horner talk in the team principals press conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS – THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVES


There were a lot of controversial moments in the 2021 F1 season and the radio messages to the race director fueled most of them. In defending their drivers, both Red Bull and Mercedes team bosses often took over the airwaves and shared their opinion on the situation. Further, it’s been displayed for the world to see. Thus, now having had some time to reflect on the season gone by, Toto Wolff admits he and Christian Horner may have taken it too far.

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From the debates at Silverstone to the arguments of the Abu Dhabi GP- while the conversations have been entertaining and even hilarious at times, it lay the sport embarrassingly bare. From Wolff and Horner screaming at Michael Masi to the race director often sharing his thought process; at times, it was an embarrassing mess.

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Regretful, Wolff is apologetic on his and Horner’s behalf. “I think we overshot. And I need to take myself by the nose and Christian. We were giving us the opportunity to talk to the race director directly and because we fight so fiercely for the interest of our teams, all of us overstepped.”

Further, Wolff had earlier advocated for sharing the messages to fans; a decision he now laments. “I equally blame Ross and myself because we have been part of the decision making to broadcast more of the channels for the purpose of transparency and entertainment for the fans.” Although he meant well, in retrospect, it wasnt the best decision.

Toto Wolff lists radio messages under failures

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Wolff has now realized that sending angry messages to the race director would only impede his process. “This certainly was part of the failures this year, that under pressure from the team principals also the race director’s life wasn’t made easier.”

Thus, Wolff acknowledged that in 2022, things should be done differently. “So we need to come back. I think the team principals shouldn’t shouldn’t speak directly to the race director. It should be the sporting directors.”

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Although Masi and Wolff now look to change the way team bosses and the racing stewards or directors converse, the conversations of the 2021 F1 season should stand as a reminder. Maybe the director could make better decisions without every team screaming into his ears while trying to do so. With 2022 coming close, maybe F1 can do better.

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Shreya Sanjeev

773 articles

Shreya Sanjeev is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having attained a journalism degree from St Xavier's College, she finds comfort in the sound of her keyboard while typing and excitement in the sound of F1 cars speeding on a track. A street circuit and Daniel Ricciardo fan through and through, Shreya claims the 2018 Monaco GP to be one of her favorite races of all time.

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