Haas change livery following severance of Uralkali partnership

Nikita Mazepin lost his Haas seat following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Haas have introduced a new livery ahead of the 2022 Formula 1 season to reflect the end of their partnership with Russia-based firm Uralkali.

The Haas team agreed a sponsorship agreement with the Potash producer that secured oligarch Dmitry Mazepin’s company a place as a name partner in Formula 1.

As part of the deal, Mazepin’s son Nikita was given a drive with the Banbury-based squad for the 2021 season alongside fellow rookie Mick Schumacher.

The Russian was out-qualified 20 times in 21 races by the 22-year-old, and managed a best finish of P14 at the Hungarian Grand Prix last summer.

The pair were set to line up alongside one another again this year, but Vladimir Putin’s decision to carry out a “military operation” – or war – in Ukraine convoluted their partnership.

The team opted to remove all Uralkali branding from their cars, trucks and motorhomes ahead of the final day of the first pre-season test in Barcelona, before the FIA decreed that all branding of Russian and Belarusian companies was barred from appearing in global motorsport.

Motorsport UK then issued a ruling that no drivers or competitors from wither of those coutries would be allowed to race in the UK, meaning the young Russian would likely have been forced to miss the British Grand Prix in July.

Eventually, despite Mazepin’s compliance with a document stating his opposition to Putin’s regime in Ukraine and his willingness to compete under a neutral flag, Haas severed ties with Uralkali due to potential damage to the reputation of their other key sponsors and financial restraints placed on Russia.

Mazepin claimed that his willingness to obey the new regulations were “ignored” by Gene Haas’ team, and he has now been replaced by Kevin Magnussen.

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“I was very surprised but equally very excited to receive the call from Haas,” said the Dane of his sensational return.

“I can’t wait to get back behind the wheel of an F1 car.

“I want to thank Haas and Guenther Steiner for the chance to resume my Formula 1 career. I know just how competitive they are and how keen they are to return to competing week in week out.”

To reflect their separation from Mazepin’s company, they have now abandoned the blue, white and red livery which was symbolic of the alliance between the United States and Russia within the team, and they have switched to a white and red livery.

The race overalls Magnussen, Schumacher and Pietro Fittipaldi will be wearing still feature a blue strip, and it is as yet unknown whether this will remain for the first race of the season in Bahrain.

Ferrari, meanwhile, are said to have dropped Russian firm Kaspersky as a partner, according to Corriere.it.

Formula1News.co.uk recently contacted them for a comment on the matter, but they declined to answer.