Felipe Massa labels Lewis Hamilton 2008 title win an ‘injustice’ and vows to ‘study everything’

Sam Cooper
Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, next to Felipe Massa, Ferrari. China, October 2008.

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, sits next to Felipe Massa, Ferrari, in a press conference. China, October 2008.

Felipe Massa has vowed to “study everything” following revelations made by Bernie Ecclestone in regards to the 2008 World Championship.

The Brazilian made headlines last month when he stated he would be looking into legal action to challenge the results of the 2008 title following Ecclestone’s admission that he and other senior F1 figures knew the full details of ‘Crashgate’ before the FIA prizegiving ceremony.

FIA rules stated at the time that a season is declared final and irreversible once the prizegiving ceremony was held meaning that when the full extent of Renault’s transgressions were made public the following year, Massa was left with little choice but to accept it having missed out on the title by one point to Hamilton.

But he has since claimed that Ecclestone’s comments give him grounds for a legal appeal and speaking for the first time since his dispute was raised, Massa criticised former leading figures of F1 and described it as an “injustice.”

“You fight them to the last corner of the last race, pass the chequered flag as the Champion and then everything changed,” Massa told Sky Sports F1. “For sure, a fight on the track.”

“Then you discover what has happened in Singapore. People, important people like Bernie, like Max Mosley, like Charlie Whiting – they knew in 2008 and they didn’t do anything.

“That is really a massive surprise for me. It’s really [an] injustice and I think definitely we need to study everything that happened because it’s not fair what has happened.”

Bernie Ecclestone reignites the flames of one of F1’s biggest controversies

The ‘Crashgate’ affair remains one of the biggest controversies to date with many senior figures not only losing their jobs but also being barred from the sport as a result.

But considering it took place in 2008, it had been consigned to the history books – that was until Bernie Ecclestone found his way to a microphone.

Speaking to F1 Insider, the 92-year-old who is never too far away from controversy admitted for the first time that he and other figures knew Renalut had cheated.

“We decided not to do anything for now,” Ecclestone said. “We wanted to protect the sport and save it from a huge scandal. That’s why I used angelic tongues to persuade my former driver Nelson Piquet to keep calm for the time being.

“Back then, there was a rule that a World Championship classification after the FIA ​​awards ceremony at the end of the year was untouchable. So Hamilton was presented with the trophy and everything was fine. We had enough information in time to investigate the matter. According to the statutes, we should have cancelled the race in Singapore under these conditions.

“That means it would never have happened for the Championship standings. And then Felipe Massa would have become World Champion and not Lewis Hamilton.