Nikita Mazepin, Haas, Bahrain International Circuit, 2021

Mazepin “very angry with myself” after crashing out of first race on lap one

2021 Bahrain Grand Prix

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Nikita Mazepin says he is “very angry with myself” after spinning out of his grand prix debut just two corners into the first lap.

The Haas rookie spun into the barriers on the exit of turn three on the opening lap of the Bahrain Grand Prix. Replays indicated he did not make contact with any of his competitors.

Mazepin came to a stop after damaging the right-hand side of his car. He told his team he spun while trying to avoid his team mate Mick Schumacher.

“I crashed, I’m so sorry guys,” Mazepin said on the radio. “I got on the kerb, tried to avoid Mick and then spun.”

Speaking to media while the race continued Mazepin explained what had happened. “It was very simple,” he said. “I made a mistake.

“The tyres were cold, I got on the kerb, took too much throttle and spun. Totally my mistake. I’m very sorry to the team, because they deserve to do much better than that. I’m very angry with myself and very sorry for the team.”

The race-ending collision capped a difficult debut weekend for Mazepin, in which he also spun in practice and twice in Q1. Despite the challenging start to his Formula 1 career, Mazepin insisted he has learned a lot from his grand prix debut.

“Obviously there are always positives to take,” Mazepin said.

“My days on track are very low. The learning experiences are there. Obviously you learn a lot through the days but you have your ups and downs and today is one of the biggest downs.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

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36 comments on “Mazepin “very angry with myself” after crashing out of first race on lap one”

  1. Josh (@canadianjosh)
    28th March 2021, 17:25

    I’ve been pretty vocal telling people to give him a chance after his video incident but this weekend was absolutely horrible for him.

    1. Yeah, Mazespin making a name for himself on track, eh @canadianjosh

    2. @canadianjosh
      I’d like to have given him some credit before his first race weekend as well.. But numerous spins..including one key one on quali.. And then an early exit on lap.1…sorry.. This guy is a clown

      1. @todfod For the benefit of been fair probably worth noting that the ‘key one’ at the end of qualifying was caused by a brake by wire failure rather than a driver error by Mazepin. And the error he made in the race was repeated by his team mate shortly afterwards at the next corner on the restart lap.

        Having watched the onboard cameras over the weekend it seems pretty clear that the back end of the Haas is exceptionally unstable & both drivers were suffering tons of oversteer all weekend.

        People are focussing on Mazepin (As it seems most decide he was hopeless a few months ago & nothing he ever does will change that) but it’s not as if Mick Schumacher didn’t have 2-3 spins & slide off track a couple other times over the weekend. Car is clearly just a dog to drive.

  2. Entirely on his own.

  3. He’s probably not the only one.

  4. Probably gonna DNF again next race just like Maldonado’s first 2 races.
    Even if Maldonado is more of a meme.

    1. Give him a chance! He’s got 22 more weekends to meme-ify himself

      1. Kinda unlikely for me if he will…

  5. at first i thought ‘hes an idiot’ but then i saw schumacher do exactly the same thing and i thought ‘probably the car’

  6. Well if he’s gonna crash out of every session he’s not gonna be able to accumulate track time either

  7. He’s not really helping his growing nickname of Nikita Massivespin, is he!

    1. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
      30th March 2021, 18:34

      Massivespin doesn’t sound very good to me. None of his spins have really been massive and the later one wasn’t even a spin exactly. Mazespin only adds one letter to his name and fits a lot better.

  8. Cristiano Ferreira
    28th March 2021, 18:18

    Maybe MazeSpin is the new Maldonado.

    Maldonado might be out of f1, but his spirit Romain in Mazespin now.

    1. Good one(s)!

    2. Good one but I think Maz-I-Spin might be more precise.

    3. Romain was a decent driver on his day.. Heck… He was more than decent on many a occasion. Maldonado also had a couple of days of brilliance.
      Mazespin still has to prove himself to be worthy in the league of pastor and romain. Right now.. He’s as cr@p as they come

    4. You know, people made more memes about Pastor Rafael Maldonado Motta than crash compilation videos.

  9. He’s got too many boobs on his hands now.

  10. Hans (@hanswesterbeek)
    28th March 2021, 18:40

    Doing everything that’s expected of him. Good job.

  11. I honestly don’t think he’s good enough to be in F1. In the sessions that count he’s interrupted both with 2 spins in qualifying and a crash just after the first turn in the race. I won’t comment on his background and will keep this based on nothing more than results. I just hope he doesn’t injure someone as honestly he seems out of his depth. Maybe he’ll adjust but would an extra year in F2 to get some more development really have hurt him.

    1. I don’t think there really is “good enough” to be in F1. It’s 20 most wanted seats in the racing world. To deserve them, you need to be one of the 20 best racing drivers in the world (excluding those who don’t seek their place in an F1 car). There’s no way on Earth he’s one of the 20. He wasn’t very good even in F2, where he enjoyed all the privileges money can buy. He’s not even the best Russian driver (I’m sure I could name at least two or three better talents). We know why he drives in F1 and there’s no need to ever avoid just saying it plainly. Heh even his team boss never claimed otherwise, he simply justified it (either this young oligarch as 2nd driver or Haas selling or closing the team).

    2. Ben Rowe (@thegianthogweed)
      30th March 2021, 18:37

      I’m going to be generous and just assume that the car is pretty awful to drive. His team mate literally mirrored what he did, but was just more lucky with the outcome. That car looks a real handful. We should give him several more races before judging him too harshly. Unlike many drivers, he looks to very clearly be frustrated with himself, so it is an indication he could well learn from it.

  12. Mazespin Mazeout

  13. It was his first weekend and he looked completely lost. He still has time to get better but there are many drivers who could have done a much better job. Still that Haas is one of the worst cars I have seen in a long time.

  14. Don’t be sorry, many people enjoyed that!

  15. Given so little testing this year that was a stupid mistake to make. Maybe a harsh First weekend will encourage him to better things in future.

  16. The real question is if dad has enough money to buy a new car each week.

    1. They’ll release him from his contract as soon as that seems a possibility

    2. At this point I’m concerned that Haas may not survive this season. It was clear in DTS that Gene Haas wasn’t willing to throw more money into a losing effort and they don’t have the money to develop the car this year at all. Is Mazepin Sr. willing to buy parts for all the cars they are wrecking if his boy is isn’t even able to complete racing laps?

  17. I love how people are ignoring that his team mate made an identical mistake at the next corner on the restart.

    And that his spin at the end of qualifying was caused by a braking issue.

    And that his team mate also had 1 spin & another near spin in the turn 5/6 section where Nikita had his 2 spins on Friday.

    Car is clearly a handful that even Mick Schumacher is struggling with. But let’s just ignore that I guess.

    1. Yes. Let’s ignore it if his teammate hasn’t caused the same amount of havoc he has.

  18. There should be something like the 107% rule during the race, and if you’re not capable of doing a certain lap time, then you’re black flagged. The Haas cars are shopping carts and they should be forced to put some time and money into them during the season.

  19. I don’t think it’s really fair to judge somebody based off 1 weekend & it’s perhaps even less fair given how utterly terrible the Haas looks to be. And also the spin at the end of Q1 wasn’t a driver error, It was a brake by wire failure.

    People are focussing on Mazepin’s spins but if your going to be fair it’s probably worth pointing out that his team mate Mick Schumacher also spun 2-3 times over the weekend & oversteered off at least 2 other times so it’s clear the back end of that car is very unstable.

    Let’s see how he does over the next few races before declaring him ‘hopeless’ or whatever, Fans are far too quick to decide these things & very rarely change there mind regardless of how well somebody does later on. I mean if it were upto F1 fans Maldonado wouldn’t have got a shot in F1 despite winning the GP2 championship & going onto win an F1 race on merit. If it wasn’t for Maldonado Williams last F1 win would likely still be Brazil 2004. He got pole & beat Alonso on pure pace in a straight fight in a year when Alonso was probably at his very best (Alonso said on Sky yesterday that he see’s 2012 as when he was at his peak).

  20. Jockey Ewing
    29th March 2021, 2:19

    Don’t be too harsh on him, he was comfortably ahead of Perez by that time, and raced a Schumacher and Vettel throughout his evenful GP.

    On the other hand, Grosjean and KMag saying that Haas not really developed the car at last season, seems to be super credible now, so they will have 2 seasons with the same car basically, which was bad at last season. Quite telling that Mick were far off Latifi at the quali, and at the race as well.

    Now I consider Haas’s scoring opportunities for this season really low, unless their rookies turning out to be very functional F1 drivers, or the car will be much better elsewhere because at the night the quickly cooling down and abrasive track at Bahrain is offering challenge by itself. But probably this is one of the reasons, why it provided amazing races many times in the recent years.

  21. I can see teams actually determining qualifying strategies around whether they are likely to be impacted by him as yellow flags basically destroy your lap (which is the right thing btw). Similar to me hearing that the ‘Trulli train’ was built into race simulations as it was such a common occurrence.

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