The Russian GP
Implications for Haas, Uralkali, and Mazepin
UPDATE 3 March: Formula 1 has officially terminated its contract with the Russian Grand Prix organizers indicating that F1 will no longer be racing at the Russian circuit.
In related news, Nikita Mazepin was banned from racing in the United Kingdom including at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone. The news also broke this morning that it is looking more and more likely that Mazepin will not race for Haas this season and be replaced by Brazilian-American, Pietro Fittipaldi.
Original article from 25 February
This morning, Formula 1 finally released a statement regarding the Russian Grand Prix after meeting with the ten teams on Thursday.
The sentiment around the world is that Russia must pay for the actions of their leaders given what continues to happen in Ukraine.
As Joe Saward stated it:
Russia is no longer welcome at the table. It is a sad situation but the country has – to a large extent – allowed its leader to do what he has done and if it wants to be allowed back into the international community, Russians must get together and get rid of Putin and his cronies. That is easy to write but hard to achieve because Putin does have widespread support at home, where the state media is constantly pumping him up.
What the F1 statement does not say is that the Russian GP is canceled. The wording is factual, yet skirts the word cancel because of the financial and political implications involved.
“It is impossible to hold the Russian Grand Prix in the current circumstances”.
If this is a court of law, this would not pass as a cancellation. What this does do is open up the fact that F1 is surely considering making a move to take the GP off the table.
There is little doubt that the force majeure clause in Formula 1’s own regulations could cover this war, even though it does not affect the actual GP location.
Haas, Uralkali, and Mazepin
The Haas team is looking into what can be done regarding the Uralkali sponsorship and what it means to the future of driver, Nikita Mazepin.
Contracts are in place, and I would not hesitate to believe that Uralkali will use all of its financial power to make a legal battle a living hell for Haas.
While I do not believe the Russian GP will be on this year, or that Uralkali will be on the Haas livery, any action will require a proper settlement according to contracts in place.
What those are, are yet to be seen.
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