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“That recommendation will have landed on Ben Sulayem’s desk”– Why Nikita Mazepin could be in danger of losing his Haas F1 team seat after IOC’s recommendation

Tanish Chachra

"That recommendation will have landed on Ben Sulayem's desk"– Why Nikita Mazepin could be in danger of losing his Haas F1 team seat after IOC's reccomendation

Nikita Mazepin is under the threat of losing his seat at Haas after Russia attacked Ukraine leading to several sanctions on Russian athletes.

Ever since Russia has attacked Ukraine, the global outrage against Russians has been immense. On Monday, International Olympic Committee (IOC) has urged all sports bodies to ban Russian and Belarusian athletes from International events.

IOC gave the FIA full recognition in 2013. Therefore, according to F1 journalist Chris Medland, the letter of suggestion would be on the table of FIA President Ben Sulayem.

So, legally, Mazepin could be banned from participating in F1. Currently, UEFA and FIFA have prohibited the participation of the Russian National team and Russian clubs in future competitions. Thus, a precedent has already been set.

Also read: Haas driver Mick Schumacher speaks against the Russian aggression in Ukraine

Haas is not concerned about Uralkali: alarming for Nikita Mazepin

Meanwhile, Mazepin’s inclusion in F1 was heavily influenced by Uralkali sponsoring Haas. But now, after the attacks in Ukraine, Haas removed the name of Uralkali from its livery.

Now, if Haas withdraws Uralkali this summer, Haas claims that they have the finances to damage control from the lost income. Therefore it only means that Mazepin’s situation in the team is not cemented anymore.

The current driver spearheading the reports to replace Mazepin is Antonio Giovinazzi. Ferrari’s close links with Haas could probably be an advantage to the Italian race driver to grab the potential vacant seat.

F1 is already taking action on Russia

The first response of F1 once the attack on Ukraine by Russia was made by cancelling the 2022 Russian GP. F1 thought that at this time, it wouldn’t be appropriate to have a racing competition in a country at war.

Right now, there is no replacement lined up for the cancelled Russian GP. However, there are some probable candidates to fill that void in the 2022 F1 calendar.

Meanwhile, Sebastian Vettel was the first F1 driver to refuse to race in Russia. Later, Max Verstappen also claimed that it wouldn’t be right to race in a country at war.

On the other hand, Lewis Hamilton is spreading helpline groups for the people stuck in Ukraine. Now, it remains to be seen what will FIA take further actions against Russian involvement in F1.

Also read: Who is the owner of the Haas as the team removes Russian partner Uralkali’s branding from car?

About the author

Tanish Chachra

Tanish Chachra


Tanish Chachra is the Motorsport editor at The SportsRush. He saw his first race when F1 visited India in 2011, and since then, his romance with the sport has been seasonal until he took up this role in 2020. Reigniting F1's coverage on this site, Tanish has fallen in love with the sport all over again. He loves Kimi Raikkonen and sees a future world champion in Oscar Piastri. Away from us, he loves to snuggle inside his books.

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