Michael Masi ‘open’ to Lewis Hamilton chat – but Mercedes ace has other ideas

Michael Masi has revealed he is "open" to a chat with Lewis Hamilton but the Mercedes ace has other ideas.

The former Formula One race director is back in the paddock for the first time since December 2021 at this weekend's Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne. Masi has not attended a race weekend since the controversial conclusion to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix over a year ago which ultimately cost him his job.

The dramatic conclusion to the season-ending race saw Max Verstappen pip Lewis Hamilton to the Drivers' Championship, denying the Brit a record-equalling fifth consecutive and record eighth overall world title.

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Masi was asked by the Daily Mail whether he would consider taking back his old job, with the Australian laughing in response to the question.

However, he did reveal he would be interested in speaking to Hamilton. "They have their perspective and are entitled to their view," he said of his critics.

"I respect any view, and it's not for me to comment on what they do or don't think. And if I am approached to have a discussion I am open to it, and always have been."

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Hamilton has shut down the idea, though, telling reporters: "I don't. I am just focused on my future. I am focused on trying to get back to winning. There is nothing to say."

The 38-year-old is going in search of his first podium of the season this weekend following back-to-back fifth place finishes in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.

Those results leave him fifth in the Drivers' Championship ahead of the Australian GP, one place above team-mate George Russell and already 24 points behind leader Max Verstappen.

As for Masi, he is enjoying his life away from the fast-paced F1 calendar, adding: "I loved the job but you don't realise the impact travelling so much has on you. When we last met in 2021, I literally lived on a plane. The joys of being able to cook a meal at home, being able to catch up with relatives are now open to me."


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