According to Albert Fabrega, the FIA ‘s statement that there will be an investigation into the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is indeed a first step indicating that Mercedes will not lodge a protest.
Mercedes withdraws protest
After the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Mercedes submitted two protests. According to Mercedes Max Verstappen had overtaken Lewis Hamilton behind the safety car and the race should never have started in the last lap. Both protests were rejected by the stewards, but Mercedes announced that evening that they would protest.
Since then it has been quiet around Mercedes, but several things indicate that Mercedes will not protest. Toto Wolff already congratulated his competitors Christian Horner and Max Verstappen with their victory. Earlier The Times reported that Mercedes wanted to withdraw their protest and there were also rumours that Lewis Hamilton would have asked his team to withdraw their protest.
Investigation by the FIA
With the message from the FIA that there will be an investigation into the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to find out what can be done better in the future, the FIA already seemed to be responding to Mercedes’ possible wish. According to the Spanish Formula 1 journalist this is the first step of the World Motorsport Council after Mercedes indicated to them that there will be no protest.
I understand yesterday’s Todt proposal to World Motorsport Council as a first step followed by a statement from Mercedes saying they won’t appeal stewards decision. I would like this to happen, but also them to take measures to to avoid that situation again in the future.
— Albert Fabrega (@AlbertFabrega) December 16, 2021
This seems to be the end of the matter for a part. Verstappen is the winner of the Abu Dhabi GP and thus the world champion of 2022. However, the FIA will have to come up with a clearer set of rules for 2022 when it comes to overtaking and the use of the safety car. In addition, it will also be necessary to establish more clearly on paper which rules can be changed by the race director during a race.