Former F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone has jumped to the defence of the FIA's under-fire race director Michael Masi.
Masi was often in the spotlight last season given his decision-making before finding himself in the full glare of publicity given his calls made during the finale in Abu Dhabi.
The Australian infuriated Mercedes boss Toto Wolff with a ruling during a late safety car period at the Yas Marina Circuit that denied Lewis Hamilton an outright eighth F1 title while handing Red Bull's Max Verstappen his first.
There have been suggestions Masi's position is untenable, with his position now resting on the findings of an investigation into the closing stages of a race that has cast a shadow over the sport and the FIA.
Yet Ecclestone, whose voice still carries weight after overseeing the running of F1 for almost 40 years, feels Masi should not be made a scapegoat.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, Ecclestone said: "I see no reason whatsoever why Michael should not continue in his job. He did what he thought was best.
"You can say I would do this or that or the other but it would have been awful if the final race had ended under a safety car.
"Michael would have got in just as much trouble. He is a good man and the FIA should stick by him."