Nicholas Latifi reveals he employed security after Abu Dhabi F1 crash

Nicholas Latifi has revealed that he had to employ security after his crash at the final race of the 2021 Formula 1 season in Abu Dhabi.

With six laps remaining in the race, the Williams driver lost control of his car at turn 13 and hit the wall. He was forced to retire from the Grand Prix.

The incident brought out the safety car. From there, a chain of decisions made by race director Michael Masi led to the controversial finish that resulted in Max Verstappen beating Lewis Hamilton to the Drivers’ Championship.

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Read: “Shocking” footage shows conversations between Wheatley and Masi during Abu Dhabi F1 finale

Furious F1 fans took to social media after the race to express their anger at Masi and the FIA. Some then targeted Latifi. They sent a string of hateful messages to the Canadian driver because of his crash.

The 26-year-old later revealed that he had received death threats.

In a lengthy statement posted to Twitter, he said: “Going back to the race weekend, as soon as the chequered flag dropped, I knew how things were likely to play out on social media. The fact that I felt it would be best if I deleted Instagram and Twitter on my phone for a few days says all we need to know about how cruel the world can be.

“The ensuing hate, abuse and threats on social media were not really a surprise to me as it’s just the stark reality of the world we live in right now.”

He later added: “What shocked me was the extreme tone of the hate, abuse and even the death threats I received.”

Nicholas Latifi reveals security employment after F1 crash

Image Credit: Getty

Such was the scale of the abuse, Latifi has now revealed that he had to employ security following the Grand Prix.

Speaking at the launch of the new Williams F1 car for 2022, Latifi said (quotes via Autosport): “So, some days I was back in London after the race, and I did have some security with me when I was doing certain things.

“I went to Winter Wonderland with my girlfriend – because we didn’t manage to fit that in before the last block of races. I had some security detail with me on that.

“So yeah, it sounds funny, it sounds silly, but we definitely did take the threats seriously because you really don’t know what could happen. It’s just an unfortunate part of the world we live in.”

Latifi is now looking ahead to the 2022 season. He will team up with Alex Albon. That is after George Russell left the team to join Mercedes.

Read: Formula 1 2022 car launch dates: When is each team unveiling their new car?

Williams unveiled their 2022 F1 car on Tuesday. After a promising 2021 season, where they scored 23 points, they will look for more improvement this year.

Nicholas Latifi scored seven F1 points in 2021. They included his career-best result of seventh position in Hungary. He also scored points in Belgium after finishing in ninth.

The Canadian made some significant strides over the year. He will hope to kick on further when the 2022 season gets underway in Bahrain in March.

Featured Image Credit: Getty