Nikita Mazepin Reveals Bizarre George Russell-Led GPDA ‘WhatsApp Group’ Incident Post Haas F1 Announcement

Published 06/22/2022, 10:30 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – Haas’ Nikita Mazepin during the press conference FIA/Handout via REUTERS

Nikita Mazepin did not have the best of starts in Formula 1. Haas signed the Russian driver in 2021, but they ended his contract the following year amid conflicts between Russia and Ukraine. Subsequently, Kevin Magnussen replaced him for the 2022 season.

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Following his termination, the relationship between him and Haas turned sour. He revealed that fellow F1 drivers supported him despite him being removed with immediate effect from the Grand Prix Drivers’ Association WhatsApp group.

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George Russell is currently one of the directors of GPDA, along with Sebastian Vettel. Speaking on this, Mazepin said, “To be honest, I was removed from the GPDA group on WhatsApp the same day Haas announced his firing.

“Of course, I received the support of my companions. Several well-known drivers who are now in the ‘top 5’ have written me private messages. Some decided to support me publicly, others to remain silent. But I’m not judging anyone.” (Translated using Google)

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The 23-year-old was paired with fellow rookie Mick Schumacher last year. Mazepin struggled to compete for points position, but Haas kept faith in him. However, his contract was terminated just a few weeks before the start of the 2022 campaign.

Uralkali, the company run by Mazepin’s father, was Haas’ sponsor last year. Amid, the partnership between the company and the American team also ended.

Nikita Mazepin is still hopeful of returning to F1

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Mazepin’s replacement Kevin Magnussen hit the ground running with Haas. The Dane has scored 15 points this year, despite only joining the team days before the first race in Bahrain.

Motor racing – Formula One – Russian Grand Prix – Sochi Autodrom, Sochi, Russia – September 24, 2021 Haas’ Nikita Mazepin arrives at the circuit REUTERS/Anton Vaganov

Seeing this, the young Russian has cited Magnussen as an example and believes he can return to the pinnacle of motorsport. He stated, “I will get behind the wheel immediately at the first opportunity. Anything is possible. Magnussen is in good shape after his break, he has proven himself, and I plan to do exactly the same to repeat his success story.” (Translated using Google)

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The former Haas driver also commented on Schumacher’s performance this year, saying that the “results speak for themselves.” The German has struggled to stamp his authority in 2022 and is only one of the two drivers yet to score a point. Mazepin, however, hopes that he will return to F1 and is working towards it.

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Rahul Madhavan

368 articles

Rahul Madhavan is a Formula 1 writer at EssentiallySports. After completing his Bachelor's degree in business administration, he is pursuing his love for sports in the form of writing. Rahul is an avid McLaren fan, who also enjoys writing about soccer.

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