Felipe Massa's legal representatives are hoping for the support of 2008 Formula 1 champion Lewis Hamilton in their efforts to challenge the outcome of the 2008 drivers' title. Massa believes that F1 and the governing body were aware of the 'crashgate' scandal during the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix before the championship was decided, based on an interview with former F1 chief Bernie Ecclestone and archived footage of late FIA race director Charlie Whiting.
Massa, a former Ferrari and Williams racer, is pursuing legal action to seek "justice for the sport" rather than financial compensation, as his team believes they missed out on winning the championship by just one point to McLaren driver Hamilton.
Bernardo Viana, representing Massa through the Sao Paulo Vieira Rezende Advogados law firm in Brazil, hopes that Hamilton, who holds seven drivers' championship titles, will support their case.
In an interview with Reuters, Viana stated, "He is an important ambassador for the sport and has always advocated for sporting integrity. He is an honorary Brazilian citizen and is very well-liked by Brazilians, so I hope he will support us. We have absolutely nothing against Hamilton."
Apart from Hamilton, it is confirmed that Ferrari, the team Massa drove for in 2008, will not be joining forces for this legal case.
In the same Reuters interview, Viana disclosed that Massa's legal team has extended the deadline for F1 and the FIA to respond to a Letter Before Claim until mid-October. Previously, the letter had set a response deadline of September 8th, citing that the F1 summer break and personnel vacations were not sufficient reasons for the delays in responses from FOM and FIA.
Speaking about the extension, Viana stated, "They have requested more time, and we are internally evaluating whether to grant them an extension in good faith. They are still within the timeframe we originally offered, so we are awaiting their response. If their response is satisfactory and they approach us for a discussion, that's acceptable. If it is not, and their response is inadequate, we will proceed with the legal strategy we have in place."