Haas claims Russian flag F1 car livery not a result of WADA ruling

Haas says it did not alter the livery of its 2021 Formula 1 car because of an anti-doping ruling banning Nikita Mazepin from racing with the Russian flag.

Haas claims Russian flag F1 car livery not a result of WADA ruling

A two-year ban for Russian athletes at world championship sporting events was announced in December by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

The ban related to state-sponsored doping and cover-ups at the 2014 Winter Olympics following investigations by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), which had recommended a four-year ban.

The Russian Automobile Federation confirmed in February that this would extend to the FIA’s world championships, meaning Mazepin cannot race under the Russian flag this year.

Mazepin is also prohibited from using national emblems, flags or symbols, as well as the word "Russia" or "Russian", on his clothing.

Haas unveiled a new livery design for the 2021 season on Thursday, ditching its traditional white, red and grey colours for a red, white and blue design, matching the colours of the Russian flag.

But team principal Guenther Steiner said the design had been planned before it was known that the WADA ruling would extend to F1, meaning it was not a bid to circumvent the ban.

Haas VF-21

Haas VF-21

Photo by: Haas F1 Team

"No, we didn’t circumvent anything," Steiner said.

"We came up with this livery already last year before all of this came out from WADA about the Russian flag.

"Obviously we cannot use the Russian flag as the Russian flag, but you can use colours on a car. In the end, it’s the athlete which cannot display the Russian flag and not the team. The team is an American team."

Steiner said the team had been in contact with the FIA over its livery ahead of the new season, but claimed it did not require approval for the design.

Mazepin will not be able to be classified as a Russian driver for his rookie F1 season, but is expected to compete as a "neutral athlete from Russia", as permitted by the ruling.

But the 22-year-old said he was still to finalise the exact terminology of his classification this year.

"I’ve wanted to compete in F1 for the whole of my life, ever since I knew that F1 existed," Mazepin said.

"It’s very unfortunate that the year I’ve achieved my goal, this stuff happened. It’s not for me to judge or decide in any way.

"Currently I’m still in a discussion on how I will be classified. There is no decision yet."

shares
comments

Related video

Steiner: F1 can react quickly if further cost cuts are required

Previous article

Steiner: F1 can react quickly if further cost cuts are required

Next article

2021 F1 Bahrain GP to admit vaccinated or COVID-recovered fans

2021 F1 Bahrain GP to admit vaccinated or COVID-recovered fans
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Nikita Mazepin
Teams Haas F1 Team
Author Luke Smith
How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams Plus

How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams

Formula 1’s latest Imola adventure turned into an expensive trip for many teams due to several crashes throughout the weekend. While balancing the books is an added factor in 2021 with the cost cap, a few midfield teams have cashed in early on development investments

Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings

A frantic wet race at Imola produced plenty of excitement and drama as drivers scrabbled for grip. Amid the hatful of mistakes and incidents that ensued, who kept their noses cleanest?

How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves Plus

How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves

Rain before the start of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix promised to spice up the action, and the race certainly delivered on that. Max Verstappen got the best launch to win from Lewis Hamilton, but both got away with mistakes that could have had serious consequences

The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era Plus

The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era

The first in a line of world beaters was designed in a back bedroom and then constructed in a shed. STUART CODLING recalls the Tyrrell 001

Formula 1
Apr 18, 2021
The clues Hamilton’s F1 contract afterthought gives to his future Plus

The clues Hamilton’s F1 contract afterthought gives to his future

The Formula 1 world reacted with surprise when it learned Lewis Hamilton’s long-awaited new Mercedes deal guarantees his presence on the grid only until the end of 2021. Both parties claimed publicly they were happy with the arrangement but, asks MARK GALLAGHER, is there more to it than that?

Formula 1
Apr 17, 2021
How a harshly ejected Red Bull star has been hooked by racing again Plus

How a harshly ejected Red Bull star has been hooked by racing again

Driver-turned-DJ Jaime Alguersuari lost his love for motorsport when he was booted out of Formula 1 just as he was starting to polish his rough edges. Having drifted from category to category then turned his back on racing altogether in 2015, he’s come full circle and is planning a return in karts for fun

Formula 1
Apr 17, 2021
Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola Plus

Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola

While Mercedes struck back against Red Bull by topping the times at Imola on Friday ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, the overall picture remains incredibly close. Despite having a possible edge this weekend, the reigning Formula 1 world champion squad is not taking anything for granted...

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021
What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track Plus

What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track

Mercedes may find itself leading the drivers' and constructors' standings after Lewis Hamilton's victory in the Bahrain Grand Prix, but it is well-aware that it came against the odds, with Red Bull clearly ahead on pace. Here's what the Brackley team must do to avoid its crown slipping

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021