Nikita Mazepin had what one would call, a bad start to the season. Just as the races were about to begin, his contract was cancelled by Haas as a result of the war that ensued between Russia and Ukraine.
Not only that, Haas terminated the contract with Uralkali- the main sponsor for the team since it was owned by Mazepin’s father Dmitry, who is known to have close ties with Vladimir Putin.
Haas replaced Nikita with Kevin Magnussen just before the F1 season started. Mazepine however hasn’t been let down by his sacking. He is determined to pursue a career in motorsport and has revealed his plans of looking beyond F1 in case things don’t work out.
Mazepin said to the Ria Novosti news agency in a statement:
“My career is now on hiatus, but I have been involved in motorsport for 18 years, and I have no intention of leaving it. I’m keeping fit and I hope to return to Formula 1.”
“If it doesn’t work out, I will consider other options. For example, I’m interested in racing in the desert. The Dakar is possible, as is the Silk Road rally.”
With the war between Russia and Ukraine still ongoing, we’re unsure of Mazepin’s return to F1, at least in this season.
The situation has turned from bad to ugly after Haas has declined to repay advance sponsorship money to Uralkali worth 12 million Euros. It has not yet paid Mazepin his salary for the term he spent training with the team.
On the other hand, Haas has weirdly demanded compensation money from Uralkali worth 8 million Euros and has declined to hand over Mazepin’s F1 car, which was due as per the contract, until it receives the amount.
Nikita Mazepin concludes his removal from F1 is part of a “cancel culture” against athletes from Russia who have been banned from competing in international sport under their country’s flag.
Opening up, Mazeping talks about how his life has changed drastically after being barred from F1. He’s now looking to compete in driving events in and around Russia.
“My life has changed radically in just one month. I’m thinking about taking part in some competitions in Russia. All things in life, however, even the bad ones, have a beginning and an end.”
“I hope that soon there will be another change, this time positive, in my life and in my career.”