Nikita Mazepin, Haas, Losail International Circuit, 2021

Mazepin loses F1 seat as Haas confirm termination of Uralkali sponsorship deal

2022 F1 season

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Nikita Mazepin has lost his race seat at Haas and with it his place on the Formula 1 grid for 2022, the team have confirmed.

The Russian driver, who was due to compete alongside Mick Schumacher for a second season with Haas this year, has been dropped by the team following a series of events prompted by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

In a statement issued today the team said: “Haas F1 Team has elected to terminate, with immediate efffect, the title partnership of Uralkali and the driver contract of Nikita Mazepin. As with the rest of the Formula 1 community, the team is shocked and saddened by the invasion of Ukraine and wishes for a swift and peaceful end to the conflict.”

Mazepin joined Haas for the 2021 season when his father’s company Uralkali, a fertiliser producer, became title sponsor of the team. The team has yet to confirm which driver will replace Mazepin, however, said that an announcement could be expected “early next week”

Russian president Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine prompted worldwide condemnation, resulting in a series of sanctions placed on the Russian economy by the United States, United Kingdom and European Union, among others. The FIA have announced that no international motorsport events will take place in Russia, while the UK, Swedish and Finnish national motorsport bodies have all banned Russian competition license holders from racing in their nations.

This year’s Russian Grand Prix was cancelled in response to the invasion. Formula 1 subsequently terminated its contract with the race’s promoters on Thursday, meaning that no further world championship grands prix will be held in the nation.

After the invasion was launched during the morning of the second day of pre-season testing for the 2022 season in Barcelona, Haas removed the logos of their title sponsor from their cars and team property. The colours of the Russian flag were also stripped from the livery of the new Haas VF-22.

Team principal Guenther Steiner said that Haas had no other option but to replace Mazepin in the team following the heavy sanctions and restrictions placed on Russian companies and athletes as a result of the war in Ukraine.

Mazepin failed to score a points finish during his rookie season in Formula 1 as Haas finished last in the constructors’ championship with no points after opting to do no development work on their VF-21 to prioritise their car for 2022’s radical new regulations. The Russian driver ended his season in 21st and last place in the drivers’ championship.

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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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  • 115 comments on “Mazepin loses F1 seat as Haas confirm termination of Uralkali sponsorship deal”

    1. When was the last time someone was fired in the middle of winter testing? Luiz Razia in 2012?

      1. *2010

      2. @wsrgo I had wholly forgotten Luiz Razia. 2013, BTW, when he was supposed to be a regular driver until he got contract terminated over funding issues & eventually replaced by Bianchi.
        The closest one I recall is Maldonado losing his 2016 Renault drive to K-Mag in the off-season, albeit in January, so before any pre-season testing had happened, but similarly over funding issues caused by PDVSA leaving in this case.

        1. Interesting question.
          Jules Bianchi was in fact the third driver to be given a contract with that drive as the team had terminated Timo Glock’s contract (he was originally signed to 2014) to get Luiz Razia in, before replacing him with Jules Bianchi.

          And wasn’t Jarno Trulli replaced by Vitaly Petrov part-way through pre-season testing in 2012?

          1. @jerejj Yes, 2013, my bad.

            @f1frog Yeah, Trulli in 2012 is an earlier example of a driver who was sacked during winter testing. I remember being quite sad that F1 was losing its last Italian driver for the disappointing Petrov. It would be ironic if Giovinazzi brings back the Italian flag on the grid this year as a replacement for Mazepin.

      3. Giedo van der Garde in 2015 for Sauber I reckon. He wasn’t officially announced as a racing driver, but he did have a contract that said he was, if I remember correctly.

      4. @wsrgo Well I’m not sure he was fired to be precise, and it didn’t happen during testing, but van der Garde lost his seat for 2015 before the season began.

        1. they signed 3 drivers problem was van der Garde had a very good contract but Sauber didn’t want to pay his money back.
          So Giedo was the driver when they didn’t gave his money back so van der Garde could pound the team before they could race because of that contract. I know van de Garde got his money and more (he wanted to race instead but that wasn’t possible) I am sure Sauber lost a lot of money as Giedo van de Garde father in law was known a law shark.

    2. A seat he should never have had in the first place anyway.

      1. True, but absolutely irrelevant. No one should lose his job because of being a Russian. People, we’re turning this world into Nazi Germany. And don’t use Putin as an excuse. This kind of discrimination, no matter the excuse, is not only highly immoral but also illegal. Shame on you people, all of you who don’t speak against this. As a matter of fact, most of you support this. And you speak about fighting dictatorship… You do and applaud to whatever you’ve been told. Funniest thing, you didn’t suffer Putin or anyone similar, but you’re the ones to have revenge. It just proves that you hated those people all along… All of this happens too fast and people seem too ready to kick out all of Russian people and confiscate their property. That last part is the funniest, because there’s nothing wrong with stealing yachts now. Yes, they didn’t earn that money in the proper way (like British or US billionaires did though…), but if they stole something, they stole it from Russian people, not some Brit from Manchester or Aberdeen. This is not civilization and in the end you’ll even make Putin seem like a decent guy.

        1. Piastri should have this drive based on his achievements, though there is no Aussie money..Packer, forest, Palmer do the right thing and back this kid into Haas !!

        2. They’re not throwing him out because he is Russian, but because his money was. Regardless of whether his dad can still pay right now or not they’d take a huge risk that in two weeks, or months, all accounts linked to Russia can no longer settle payments. The relationship was already extremely contingent on the money. Mazepin didnt get frozen out by Haas, but by Putin choosing to freeze out all Russians.

        3. Ambrogio Isgro
          5th March 2022, 10:45

          Mazepin is an Haas driver due to his sponsorship. Without it Haas dropped him. The assets of Russians billionaire are blocked due to their direct links with Putin.

        4. Hello Putin’s stooge, now be gone.

          1. @ju88sy
            Your primitive behaviour as showcased buy your utterly primitive, childish and ill-mannered comment should have no place on a forum like this, where grown up people exchange their views and have good conversations.

            1. Except the site has been anything but that over the last year. I support Keith and the work of the RF team. But unfortunately that whataboutery comment caught my eye as it has all the hall marks of the well known Russian internet troll factories. Evidenced by the lack of any comment history.

              Defending the indefensible, it deserved all my scorn. Mazepin should have been dropped by Haas last year based on his well documented misogynistic behaviour, an indefensible individual.

        5. Imagine missing the point by this much. He was never good enough for an F1 seat on merit, he had it because of daddy’s money. If Daddy’s money was to disappear for whatever reason (the company going bankrupt, or this reason as it has turned out) then he was also going to lose his seat, and that’s always how it’s been with pay-drivers in F1.

          Calm down.

          1. he was good enough for f1. every f2 driver is

        6. Coventry Climax
          5th March 2022, 12:45

          You should take care about what misinformation you spread, buddy. There’s heavy repercussions according to the latest russian law.
          By that same law, ironically, Putin himself would have to serve some -wild guess; three?- life-sentences.

        7. Mazepin’s daddy made his billions by allying himself with a man who is currently committing war crimes dropping bombs on civilians. If you’re against shutting them out from this sport, that says more about you than anyone else.

          1. where is your proof of that? provide links of how daddy Mazepin made his money, you are making bad assumptions. What do you make of team HAAS then, American team, should they be cancelled aswell because of the attrocities they have commited (far more since World War 2 than Russia).

        8. Sorry, but people supporting Russia in this can go to hell

        9. @Dex

          Finally, someone with sense, who can identify the hypocrisy and prejudice the Western world is practicing right now against Russians. Unfortunately, some respected F1 journalists are also supporting this. A maniac’s actions shouldn’t be blamed on every Russian out there. If that’s the case, every citizen of the once colonial nations should be punished now for the widespread slavery and apartheid they practices against African slaves in the 19th century. The atrocities practiced by the United States at Guantanamo Bay, and the wholly unnecessary invasion of Iraq, never attracted any sanctions against the country or its athletes. The West rules the world and runs the show, so it will never happen.

          In this case though, Nikita was purely in the team because of the sponsorship. When that’s gone, obviously he’d lose his drive. With the sanctions being imposed on Russia, it would get impossible for the Haas team to receive the sponsorship money from a Russian company.

      2. +1

        Haas are a joke. A series of dubious sponsors and bizarre decisions generally, including bringing in Mazepin, a driver who wouldn’t cut it on Super Mariokart.

        1. He made the cut in F2 and was up to speed enough in a bad car in F1. HAAS is an American team, that is why they are a joke.

      3. What a load of rubbish, this kid has talent without doubt. He might have done some mistakes, but he is still young and something he can work on and improve.

        1. Hahahaha, best joke if the day. Mazepin and self reflexion…

          And even if he had the talent, he should have been thrown out last year after the sexual harassment video emerged. But also than he was allowed to stay because of the money. Not his talent. Now the money is gone, he his gone.

          And no, I have nothing against Russian sportsmen, they didn’t start a war. And if talented and an good addition to F1, most welcome, even today imho.

          1. No, he didn’t start a war. But his father, who pays for his seat, is close to Putin, and Putin did start a war.
            Any criticism of the way from either Mazepin?

      4. why not? that is just your oppinion and probably dislike of the driver, but dozens of drivers in f1 have come in the same way, some have gone on to great success… you can say the same about the junior series which are even worse than f1. Money rules in motorsport.

    3. As much as I’m sure he’s a lovely guy, that seat should not go to Pietro Fittipaldi. Haas should take this opportunity to prove that they are a serious F1 team, and try to hire the best drivers they can find, whether that be Piastri, Hulkenberg, Calum Ilott or at least someone who has achieved enough to be worthy of an F1 seat. Mazepin to Fittipaldi honestly doesn’t seem like much of an improvement, if any. At this point, Gene should just sell up if they’re not really going to be that serious about F1.

      1. This! And Alpine should pay whatever to put Piastri in the seat and let him make experience

        1. I’d be very happy if Piastri got the seat! Brilliant F2 season, would be a great replacement that’s proven he’s worth a chance.

          1. The 2020 F2 champion versus the 2021 F2 champion in the same car – I would really like to see that.

          2. So would I. Haas buy their engines, don’t they? Alpine/renault don’t have any other customer teams do they? I see a potential match

        2. @Manto, I somehow doubt Haas would take him merely on loan.

      2. I agree, there are better drivers out there than Pietro. Let’s see who’s available, and who Haas will choose.

      3. @mashiat My sentiments exactly. Not sure employing a driver who nearly got lapped by a Williams in Abu Dhabi lends itself to what they need.

        They have basically completely sacrificed 2021 for 2022 so they need a proven commodity to maximise this. They may not get another chance like this to move significantly up the grid in one fell swoop.

        1. @chimaera2003 While I don’t think he’s an inspiring choice either, that is not really fair to Fittipaldi, you should compare him to Magnussen, the gap between them on the final lap they both completed was 22 seconds, that’s not terrible. Plus I think Magnussen said that was the team’s least competitive weekend in the season, and the Williams was finding form in those latter races.

      4. Giovinazzi?

        1. @Richard Also mentioned, but P. Fittipaldi is more likely, based on indications & references.
          However, we’ll find out by next Thursday at the latest.

      5. @mashiat Piastri is pretty much as unrealistic as he was for AR.
        Hulkenberg has been away from regular F1 racing a bit too long for someone who hasn’t achieved decent success in the series, not to mention he didn’t do nearly any racing in the last two years, so increased rustiness risk. Even he’s admitted the F1 train has probably left. Ilott, I’m unsure now that he’s already started in IndyCar.
        I don’t have an issue with P. Fittipaldi becoming the replacement if/when this happens.
        He’s, after all, the easiest choice overall. He’s already in the team, has his seat fit done before, etc.

    4. Barry Bens (@barryfromdownunder)
      5th March 2022, 9:14

      It’s interesting how the world works sometimes. Pretty much everyone and their mum hated the guy, but it took a war to get rid of him…

      Having said that: I think that Haas should at least attempt to get Herta out of his currect contract: they might as well, seeing as Fittipaldi won’t have much more experience.

      1. Colton Herta doesn’t have a super license, nor does he fulfil the requirements to get one.

        1. @proesterchen Exactly & what I’ve pointed out pretty much ever since he first got mentioned last October when the failed AR buyout attempt came to light.

        2. Barry Bens (@barryfromdownunder)
          5th March 2022, 10:58

          As if set rules haven’t been bend before

          1. True but not going to happen. Herta’s not gonna leave his plus Indy seat to putter around the back in a deadbeat Haas. He’ll only come to F1 as part of a concerted Andretti effort (though there’s every chance that is what the current Haas setup will become.)

          2. @barryfromdownunder Not in SL matters.
            Exceptions are only for COVID-induced force majeure situations, i.e., a planned racing program getting affected heavily, as happened to Vips in 2020, hence why he got SL despite not having reached 40 SL points.
            AFAIA, he’s thus far the only one who’s met this requirement.
            Anyway, thinking about Herta is pointless, even more so since the Andretti plan shifted towards a team formation from scratch.

        3. greasemonkey
          5th March 2022, 15:32

          The SL points for IndyCar are broken, and there are several paths in the language to get around that until they fix it.

          Any of Herta, Palou, McLaughlin, or O’Ward ought be available with allowable bending.

          1. greasemonkey
            5th March 2022, 15:36

            Also, if you can get exception SL points for fighting Russia as a Ukrainian in Kyiv, Igor Skuz could probably get around the track well enough.

    5. Good riddance for multiple reasons. Nikita wasn’t future star, nor decent midfield runner. He and his father made many pretensions as if they should’ve been given silver spoon. And with Uralkali background in the Russia political arena and relations with Kremlin, it was a no brainer after war in Ukraine has started.

      I’m just sad only now world, and especially Western countries realised what is Russia. So many people were selling souls for money, meanwhile russian oligarchs and even Kremlin were achieving their goals. Now world is realising to some extent what is Russia and Kremlin. You can say ordinary people and sportspeople shouldn’t suffer from sanctions, but they are responsible who is in government. I know about corruption during elections and punishments they impose for different opinion, but still, if a couple of million of people would go into the streets of Moscow, it would be a clear message to Kremlin and even Omon couldn’t stop them, especially as army forces are now in Ukrain, with their hands full of job, they are failling to do (fortunately). And these kids of wealthy daddies’ have certain background, therefore, I’m not sad for them. When they change, they can come back, ordinary russians are good people.

      1. As much as I agree with you the last time the Russian population protested the kremlin cracked down. It’s easy to say that the population should stand up to their leaders but that requires someone or a group to organise it which could result in prison or death. Citizens rising up against their leaders doesn’t always have a happy ending, look at Syria

        1. We were fighting in the streets for our right to choose in 2014 and we won. Since then the Russia is at war with us in one shape or another. Still here, still fighting. All worthy things are incredibly hard. If they were easy, they wouldn’t be worthy.

          1. And I completely support Ukraine and its people in this horrible situation, as always it’s civilians that suffer.
            The general impression on the media I follow is that the younger population of Russia don’t support this and any older ones are brainwashed by state controlled media, I hope Putin is overthrown but I also believe he is crazy enough to turn his powerful army on his own people as he did on yours. I wish you all the best Leftie.

            1. We will hold. We will rebuild. My determination to visit a Grand Prix in person is greater than ever. Cheers, my fellow F1 fanatic :)

          2. Well said, Leftie.

            Glory to Ukraine! Glory to the Heroes!

      2. I bet you love Pietro! Future star right?

      3. So presumably you’re cancelling Tennis’s new world No.1, Daniil Medvedev as well?

    6. Inevitable, thus also unsurprising. He just didn’t really stand a chance everything considered.
      His replacement should be P. Fittipaldi based on all indications & references.

    7. In Putin’s Russia, team changes you.

    8. Another little bit of justice. Thank you, Haas.

    9. If Fittipaldi comes with Banco Di Brasil sponsorship I wonder if Haas will go with a lovely blue and yellow sash over the car, which of course would be the colours of Ukraine.

    10. Hard to see how this could have gone any other way. Once the funding was compromised, there’s no justification in keeping a driver who got so thoroughly thrashed by a fellow rookie.

      Nothing against Pietro but for Haas’ sake they need to look elsewhere. The lack of experience among the drivers has and will continue to hurt them. Sure, Mick has a year’s experience, but I can’t imagine he’s learned much driving the slowest car alongside F1’s slowest driver. If Haas seriously expect to move up the grid this year, they absolutely need a more experienced driver in the other seat to aid development.

    11. Discrimination based on nationality. How could the Western democracies ever fall this far? It is a shame.

      1. Kristof Michiels
        5th March 2022, 10:10

        I see your point, but I don’t think that’s the case here. I think it’s mainly because Haas are dropping Uralkali (under pressure perhaps). Uralkali put Mazepin in the car. Without the financial backup, there’s no use in putting Mazepin in that car, since he simply isn’t good enough, more so if they can get another driver who has a bag of money they ARE allowed to use.

        1. That’s not true Kristof. He wouldn’t be allowed to race in UK for being a Russian. That’s why they had to drop Uralkali anyway. Yes, in UK they don’t allow Russians to race. It doesn’t matter who they are, it matters if you’re Russian or not. The next thing must be a DNA test to check our racial status?

          1. Funniest thing is that I always wanted my own country to distance from Russia for political and economical reasons, but damn, I won’t stand for all this and remain silent. This is the time when we show who we are, our integrity and dignity. I’ll never be a part of masses going for Russians, Ukrainians, Jews, homosexuals, Martians, whomever. This is not why our grandparents fought in the World War II.

            1. Mate, I hope your contract isn’t in Roubles.

          2. While it is absolutely right to separate the common Russian from those in the armed forces and government, similar distinctions should be made here. The elected government of the United Kingdom isn’t banning citizens of the Russian Federation from competing in sports in the country. Rather, Motorsport UK, which is the FIA-recognised governing body of British motorsport, is banning drivers racing on their Russian counterparts license from competing in motorsport events over which they have jurisdiction.

          3. Thats not the case Dex. If the British gp was the only issue then they would have dropped Nikita for that one race and reinstated him the next. uralkali has been dropped because Haas will not be able to continue working with them due to sanctions and Mazepin sr’s relationship with Putin, regardless of the hypocrisy surrounding F1 and other countries at war such as Saudi Arabia it doesn’t stop the fact that sanctions and swift payments stop that relationship from continuing. Nikitas seat is based solely on that and there is no reason to keep him on without access to his fathers money

          4. That’s incorrect. He was banned from racing here, because of who sponsored him. If he’d been part of Mercedes, Williams, RB etc – I can’t see him having a problem.

            There’d be outrage, if we were punishing children because of the actions of their parents, i.e. Ronnie O’Sullivan’s career, is never getting off the ground using this new rule. It would make us little better than Putin.

            Daniil Medvedev, the new Tennis world No.1, will not have a problem entering Wimbledon and is currently having no problem entering tournaments anywhere else.

            It’s imperative that the world distinguishes between Putin and his cronies / followers and the rest of citizens.

      2. That’s the take of a 5 year old on this whole issue.

      3. Not at all @spafrancorchamps. In this respect F1 is very simple and straightforward. A paydriver who’se cheque bounces/fails to arrive is gone. Simple as that.

        Uralkali was not able to pay (I would estimate they might have even already failed a payment at the day of the first test, when I look back at what Haas was saying about the situation last week). Look above for the mentions of the likes of Razia, VdGarde and even Trulli etc and you can easily find many more examples of sponsorships disappearing and drivers being dropped for exactly the same reason.

      4. Putin and crew? That’s a fact.

      5. @spafrancorchamps “Discrimination based on nationality” is your choice of wording it. Overwhelmingly Western democracies are not ‘discriminating’ against Russians. The vast vast majority of Russians living and working and contributing in Western democracies are absolutely free to do so and are welcome. This situation with Uralkali and the Mazepins happens to be unique, and it started with Putin and his cohort discriminating against Ukrainians in an illegal murderous takeover of their country by force. What is a shame is that you would have a sanction of an F1 oligarch under the extreme circumstance of war overshadow the issue by painting all Western democracies with the same brush. Shame on you.

    12. Eventually the necessary decisions. Mazepin had his chance to distance himself, but he chose not to.

      1. +1. Banning russians athlets to push em to use their brain and hard over personal interest. Ucraina pain will end when pain Is shared with russians and everyone. None has ro be winner bere.

        1. You’re not legally obliged to use your brain. Thus you can’t be legally punished for not using it. Also, having your own mind is using your brain. Thinking what you MUST think is the opposite. No matter what’s right and what’s wrong. And I just wonder, how many Brits would speak out against their country if it went to war in some foreign country? Aaaah yes. Almost none at all. Heavens, they all must be bad people. Yeah, right… Life is more complicated than this. The easiest thing is to speak and repeat the same mantra.

          1. Its his countrys government and thereby one can interpret his consent, as he doesnt speak up against the invasion. And providing public stage, which F1 for sure is, would imply to tolerate and accept this.

            Exclusion of russian athletes is the only meaningful option, unless they clearly distance themselves from their current government and its doings.

          2. It’s not a legally or not legally matter here. Thought, on WW2 the USA wasn’t legally obliged to intervene vs the nazi but they did helping the allied and resulted decisive. They wouldnt, how would resulted Europe?

      2. Great comment.

        It’s quite simple all Russian athletes allowed to compete, need to be distancing themselves from Putin.

        We don’t need a aggressive criticism of the, unless we want their families rounded up and harmed.

        Just a criticism of the war or even hope for peace / sympathy with the Ukranians will do.

        The likes of the Russian Tennis players Medvedev and Rublev have done this Mazepin hasn’t. Not that it would save him in this situation.

    13. One small step for man, one giant leap for paydriver kind.

      There are major issues, that stem from sponsored drivers..

      For one underperforming drivers can sta, in F1 to deteriorate the sporting and show aspects.

      Really ideally we would not have pay drivers. There are no pay NBA players, teams have them to win, not because their daddy can pay for expensive shoes..

      Saddly shoes in F1 are rather expensive.

      But hey Haas was down on credibility last year, and this will improve things.

      If they cannot survive financially, there are people willing to buy in to F1.

    14. RocketTankski
      5th March 2022, 11:39

      On the plus side, he’ll now have more time for his other hobbies

    15. Josh (@canadianjosh)
      5th March 2022, 12:00

      It was an oligarchs son, if it was Kvyat he may have kept that seat but Putin and Nikita’s dad are involved with each other.

    16. I guess this is how obviously dirty the dirty money has to be for F1 to take action.

    17. One of the drivers rumoured to be in the running for the drive is Jehan Daruvala, I’m hoping for Oscar Piasti but Renault / Alpine will need to look under the sofa for some spare change. They will properly give us the answer who will it be Wednesday.

      1. @paulsf1fix Really? I haven’t seen him mentioned anywhere, but more relevantly, he’s an RB academy driver, so highly doubtful unless he left the driver program.

    18. I don’t understand why his father, a multi billionaire, can’t simply pay the team for his son’s seat single handedly, like lawrance stroll did, even if his company doesn’t.

      1. RandomMallard
        5th March 2022, 12:36

        @esploratore I don’t know why he didn’t do that last year, but I imagine that would also be pretty difficult in the current climate, because I wouldn’t be surprised if Mazepin Sr. gets hit with sanctions himself soon, or if Western countries (in particular the UK and US) become barred from taking more than a certain amount of money from Russian individuals or companies in the near future. But this is only speculation so don’t take it as gospel please.

        1. Ah, ok, that makes sense, also looks like he’s been losing money steadily since 2014 from a check I did.

    19. Ideally now a potential great driver will get a chance, but realistically an untalented pay driver is already writing a cheque. Although I wouldn’t be too surprised if Kubica bought his way into this drive, as I don’t think Ferrari want competition that will take any shine off of Mick.

      The greatest marketing strategy Haas could pull would be take a W Series driver and place them in the driver’s seat, sponsors should jump all over that opportunity. They could spin away from Russia links with a bucket load of marketing, they’d instantly be plucky underdogs giving the greatest opportunity and hope to the under represented. Liberty needs to get on this fast, otherwise this is a wasted opportunity.

      1. Are any W series drivers currently able to drive in F1? I don’t think any of them have super licenses. But it could be a great move for Haas, especially is said driver has some sponsorship to bring to the table.

      2. @jasonj Kubica & Orlen are tied to AR, so I doubt.
        Additionally, his chance of becoming a regular driver yet again is nearly non-existent anyway.

    20. I can fairly safely say that he will not find another seat in F1. If we were talking about a young Alonso, Bianchi etc., ie a star of the future, then the conversation would probably be very different. The fact is that Mazepin was not good enough for F1 and was only there because of his money, so it’s not a great loss. My hope is that Haas will be able to find a suitable replacement on such short notice. I would love for them to go for the best driver, but unfortunately Mazepin was their biggest source of income, so they’ll need someone who can bring in the dollars.

    21. Out on the seat of his Haas. Good.
      And F1 has associated itself with way too many “fertiliser producers” through the years…

    22. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      5th March 2022, 14:59

      It’d be nice to see Hulk back in a seat.

    23. Lol chuckled at the choice of picture for this article.

    24. Oh no! …Anyway :)

    25. So overall a driver not fit for f1 but the circumstances in which he lost the seat aren’t great.

    26. Fittipaldi hasn’t done much in motorsport besides being related to some famous drivers. Stick Piastri in that seat or at the very least Giovanazzi can bring some experience.

    27. He allready found a job :)

    28. I am not sure how this is going to help stopping the war, but hey… who am I to judge?

      1. Perhaps Mazepin Sr. and his oligarch friends will be so put out that they will do something about their great benefactor Putin.

    29. He shouldn’t puff his cheeks out like that … that just looks weird.

      Nikita – we all understand that you want to be a famous racing driver – but demanding the best car just because your Daddy is a close friend of a maniac isn’t what this sport is about.
      Unless you have some more money perhaps?

      F1 is always open to more money ;)

    30. Well, one good thing came out of all this.

      Hope they get Piastri in (I know I know, they won’t)

    31. Really not sure what so many people are struggling with here…..

      Mazepin has not lost his seat (just) because he is Russian. That would indeed be totally wrong.

      Mazepin has lost his seat because he brought sponsorship/paid to be in the seat ahead of other drivers.

      That money is directly linked to the Putin regime. Or do people think Mazepin snr just gets a private audience with Putin for some friendly cake and a chat?.. (would that be better if he did? i think not).

      That sponsorship as a result of those links (and sanctions) has been terminated. No money to pay for the seat = no seat.

      The guy is probably the closest Russian sportsman in any discipline to the Putin regime and as such, Haas cannot afford to be seen to affiliate with that. Let alone keep on a guy in a seat who isn’t very good and isn’t bringing in the only reason he got the seat to begin with. Cash. Which is now dirty cash.

      This really isn’t rocket science.

    32. So much inadequacy and poor decision making by Haas over the years. They have a really great opportunity to get back on the right track by signing a decent young talent.

    33. All i can say is good riddance to him…He shouldn’t have been allowed to race in F1 after the groping incident…

      1. If we are going to scrutinize the private lives of people to decide who is allowed to race in the end only robots will be allowed to race. Same goes for countries. If we research their history to decide which ones should not host a race, all racing will be done in Antarctica.

        Welcome to the Antarctic Robot F1 Championship!

        1. Melanos Is it not proper to hold people to account for their poor behavior?

          1. It is proper to hold account to them within the context of where it happens. If he does something wrong outside of F1, the systems outside of F1 should decide what happens to him outside of F1.

            Given the great media attention of the sport it isn’t surprising if a team acts upon what happend outside of F1, but it should not be mandatory for it to do that.

            A bit like if a bad person does a good thing….does it suddenly not count as a good thing because it was a generally bad person who did it?

            I’m okay with Mazeopin out, but mostly out of skill to be there, not because of the war, although I can imagine Haas’s reasons to do so.

    34. got to say i’m a bit conflicted on this one. Glad to see him gone, don’t like that it’s basically because he happens to be Russian and not that he lacks talent, but he would have never been there in the first place without the dirty money. Overall a win for the sport, but still feels dirty. Guess that’s just the real world.

    35. Very good. Not russian in any sport.
      Stop war.

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