Nikita Mazepin says he is suing Haas F1 Team for lost wages
Do you remember Nikita Mazepin? The Russian was a Formula 1 driver who competed in the sport for one season and made a name for himself by consistently not finishing, or at least finishing near the back of the pack. He was then dismissed at the start of the 2022 season after the Haas F1 team severed ties with Russian title sponsor Uralkali, which was his father’s company. Now the disgraced racer says he is suing the team for the wages he lost following his sacking.
Mazepin’s tenure in F1 was not a proud moment for the sport. He entered top-level motorsport following allegations of assault against a woman, which he said he would be able to overcome by doing his “talk on the track”.
As a result, he consistently finished bottom of the field and even managed to finish his first season 21st in a series with 20 full-time drivers.
But it wasn’t his shocking behavior and poor performance that led to his departure from the sport. Instead, the Haas F1 team found some mores lying around in the paddock and severed ties with title sponsor Uralkali following the occupation of Ukraine by Russia.
The fertilizer company which belongs to the oligarch father of Mazepinquickly wiped all traces of his sporting involvement from Haas cars, trucks and team apparel.
Following the departure from Uralkali, Mazepin’s position in the team has become untenablebecause it was directly linked to the funding he provided. So he was replaced by veteran rider Kevin Magnussen, who had a pretty good season.
Now, Mazepin says he is suing Haas F1 team to try to recover part of the salary he thinks he is owed. According to The Race:
“In an interview with Russian news outlet RBC, Mazepin said his legal action would be between him and Haas only and was independent of the team’s former main sponsor, Uralkali.
“He described the court case against Haas as his ‘personal matter’ and stressed that any lawsuit would take place specifically between him and the team, after reports earlier this year that Uralkali was seeking reimbursement of sponsorship funds that he had paid to Haas before the 2022 season.
Mazepin asserts that at when his F1 racing contract was terminatedthe team had me “wage arrears for 2022” which the team has yet to pay.
In the interview with Russian media, Mazepin said:
“I am only talking about the fact that the contractual obligations have not been fulfilled.
“You also have to understand that we had two independent contracts. And break the deal with the title sponsor [Uralkali] had no direct impact on my future in the team.
“So that they [Haas] made two separate decisions. I haven’t seen my money, so we’re going to court.
Jalopnik has contacted the Haas F1 team to comment on the matter.