‘We Didn’t Circumvent Anything’ – Haas Defend Usage of Russian Flag Colors in 2021 F1 Livery

Published 03/05/2021, 1:18 AM EST
Formula One F1 – Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – December 11, 2020 Haas’ Kevin Magnussen during practice REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed/Pool


Haas F1 recently unveiled their 2021 machinery in low-key fashion amidst the busy season of F1 car launches. F1 fans could not help but notice a very significant change from their 2020 challenger’s livery.

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In place of the predominantly red-and-gray shades that adorned the car last year, the colors red, blue, and white along with sponsor Uralkali occupied the surface. One would of course receive an instant reminder of the Russian flag’s colors looking at the livery.

So, since new rookie, Nikita Mazepin, will not be officially allowed to drive under the Russian flag, questions arose about the livery design. But team principal Guenther Steiner has now said that there is no attempt to ‘circumvent’ anything.

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Came up with this livery already last year, said Haas boss Steiner

Steiner explained, “No, we didn’t circumvent anything. We came up with this livery already last year before all of this came out from WADA about the Russian flag.”

As part of the ban issued by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), no Russian athlete can display national symbols, emblems, flags, etc. during their respective competitions. Mazepin will hence reportedly race as a “neutral athlete from Russia” in the 2021 F1 season.

“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,” concluded Steiner.

Mazepin and Mick Schumacher will be making their official debuts this season

The team has now elected to bring in Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin into their fold. There is much attention building especially towards the former, considering his allegiances to F1 icon Michael Schumacher.

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HOCKENHEIM, GERMANY – OCTOBER 13: Mick Schumacher #4 looks on after race 1 of the final race of the Formula 3 Championship at Hockenheimring in Hockenheim, Germany. (Photo by Christian Kaspar-Bartke/Bongarts/Getty Images)

In addition, Mick is also an F2 champion, outlining his credentials as a top division driver for the future. Mazepin achieved race wins and podiums in the 2020 F2 season, which means there is immense potential on his end too.

Therefore, both drivers clearly have the capability and would be eager to display it in their very first season in Formula 1. Haas will hence hope that this move for two rookies pans out as a good decision in the long-term future.

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MORE – NFL Star Tom Brady Cheers on Aston Martin After F1 Team Unveils Its New Car for 2021

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Bhargav Gopal

927 articles

Hailing from Bengaluru, Bhargav is an F1 and NASCAR author for EssentiallySports. He is a huge fan of Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing. Bhargav also has an MBA in Sports Management from the Symbiosis School of Sports Sciences, Pune.

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