The Haas F1 Team has signed Nikita Mazepin for 2021, just over a month after sources told Formula1News.co.uk that the Russian driver will “definitely” be driving for the team next year.
The American racing outfit didn’t specify the term of his contract, only saying it is a “multi-year deal.”
Mazepin is currently third in the Formula Two Drivers’ Standings, and it’s likely that Championship leader Mick Schumacher will be joining him at Haas next year.
Commenting on the signing, Haas team principal Gunther Steiner said: “Nikita has underlined his credentials in F2 this year, with two victories and a handful of podiums in a strong season.”
Meanwhile, Mazepin said it was a “lifelong dream come true” and is excited to begin his journey in Formula One with Haas.
“Becoming a Formula 1 driver is a lifelong dream come true for me. I really appreciate the trust being put in me by [team owner] Gene Haas, Gunther Steiner, and the whole of the team.
“They’re giving a young driver an opportunity and I thank them for that. “I’m looking forward to starting our relationship together, both on and off the track, and I’m naturally keen to continue to demonstrate my abilities after a strong Formula 2 season.
“The team will be looking to me for feedback and inputs in order to refine its package for 2021 and beyond. I will take that responsibility on and can’t wait to get started,” he added.
It’s unclear if his father, Russian billionaire Dmitry Mazepin, will be providing some sort of financial contribution to the team as part of his contract.
It was previously reported that Dmitry Mazepin was looking to buy the Haas F1 Team, but when approached for comment on the matter by Formula1News.co.uk, the American racing outfit insisted that the team is not for sale.
After finishing second in the now-defunct GP3 series in 2018, Mazepin moved up the feeder series ladder to Formula Two and finished 18th in his debut season.
He switched teams at the end of 2019 and has been competitive throughout the 2020 F2 season, winning two feature races and bagging a handful of podiums.