In golf (and most other sports), when the tournament is over so is your opportunity to get the results changed because of a potential rules violation. If Felipe Massa has his way, that won’t be the case in Formula 1 racing. The Brazilian driver was caught up in the famous “Crashgate” scandal of 2008 when a wreck involving Nelson Piquet Jr. ended up helping Piquet’s teammate win a race—and costing Massa the season-long driver’s championship by a point.

All of that would have been (bitter) water under the bridge had it not come out that not only did Piquet Jr. intentionally crash on orders from his team, but Formula 1 head Bernie Ecclestone was quoted saying he and other racing executives knew about it and decided not to investigate—or potentially throw out the results of the race while there was still time to do so.


Felipe Massa is exploring a lawsuit against Formula 1 for damages from lost income he did not receive by being denied the World Championship title in 2008 due to what he says was a blundered ruling.

Darren Heath Photographer

Massa has now filed paperwork stating he intends to sue Formula 1 for the millions he says he would have earned because of a boost to his marketability as a world champion.

If Massa’s suit succeeds and establishes a precedent that works across sports, it sets up some fascinating opportunities for golfers (or their estates) to potentially polish their résumés retroactively.

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