Formula 1 ends contract with Russian Grand Prix amid Russian invasion of Ukraine

Days after the Sochi GP was cancelled, F1 have announced they have fully ended their involvement with Russian GP promoters

The Sochi Grand Prix, which was due to take place in September, had already been cancelled but this has now been followed up by a full ending of the sport’s contract with Russia.

This will also mean that there will no longer be a race in St Petersburg which was where the Russian GP was due to move in 2023.

Igora Drive was set to host the Russian Grand Prix until the contract ended in 2025.

A statement made on the Formula 1 website said: “Formula 1 can confirm it has terminated its contract with the Russian Grand Prix promoter.

“It means that Russia will no longer have a race in the future.

“Last week F1 announced that it is impossible to hold the Russian Grand Prix in 2022 in the current circumstances.”

Sochi has been on the Grand Prix calendar since 2014 and President Putin was a key instigator in getting the race set up.

Lewis Hamilton is the most successful driver at Sochi with five wins to his name, while Mercedes have taken the most wins by a constructor.

Hamilton is one of many F1 drivers to have voiced their opposition against Russia’s actions taking to Instagram to say:

Hamilton offered a heartfelt message to people of Ukraine

“When we see injustice it is important we stand against it.

“My heart goes out to all the courageous people of Ukraine who are facing such terrible attacks for simply choosing a better future and I stand with the many Russian citizens who oppose this violence and seek peace, often at risk to their own freedom.”

The recent decisions taken by F1 have been in contrast with the FIA and in what is a very rare occasion, there has been a stark contrast between the two organisation’s stances on Russia.

The FIA has allowed for Russian competitors to take part in global motorsport events, meaning that Haas’s Nikita Mazepin will be allowed to continue in a neutral capacity.

However, on Thursday 3 March 2022, Motorsport UK announced that Russian-licensed drivers had been banned from competing in the United Kingdom, thus meaning that Mazepin will not be allowed to participate in the British Grand Prix in July.

The decision was justified by the FIA saying that it was in line with the policy of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), however the IOC then recommended that: “event organisers should not invite or allow the participation of Russian and Belarusian athletes and officials in international competitions…in order to protect the integrity of global sports competitions and for the safety of all participants.”

The IPC have now taken the decision to ban Russian and Belarussian athletes from the Winter Paralympics.

Mazepin’s father, Dmitry Mazepin, is a part-owner of the Haas’ title sponsor, Uralkili.

Haas removed the branding of the Russian fertiliser company for the third day of testing in Barcelona last week and will remain with a white livery.

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