Nikita Mazepin admits he needs to learn ‘how to act properly’

Nikita Mazepin ended the 2021 championship 20th, while his Haas team finished last in the Constructors' Championship.

Haas driver Nikita Mazepin has revealed where he is lacking currently as a racing driver, and says he would like to strike up a better working relationship with his team.

Mazepin joined fellow Formula 1 rookie Mick Schumacher at Haas in 2021, and was out-qualified 20 times by the German in a difficult season for both.

The American outfit managed a best finish of P13 at the Hungarian Grand last year through Schumacher, while the Russian ended the same race one position behind.

It was the first time since 2015 that a team has gone scoreless in an entire season, leaving Haas last in the Constructors’ Championship following an immensely disappointing year.

READ: AlphaTauri boss disagrees with Haas’ approach

What did not make matters any easier was Mazepin’s accident-prone nature, spinning the car multiple times as the season wore on and earning himself the nickname “Mazespin.”

As such, he was presented with a spinning top as a joke by team principal Guenther Steiner ahead of the Styrian Grand Prix last year.

Mazepin and his German team-mate almost got involved in a collision at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix last June, and a couple of spicy exchanges with his race engineer made for a difficult opening year at the Banbury-based team for the 22-year-old.

His behaviour within the team is something he believes he needs to work on.

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“Learning how to act properly in the team, I think that is something that I need to improve,” he admitted in an interview with

The Russian indicated that the step up from Formula 2 to Formula 1 was sizeable regarding the volume of team members he needs to work with.

“I feel very comfortable working with three, four or five people,” he affirmed.

“But when it’s hundreds, I think I sometimes lack spending the amount of time I need and pay as much personal time as I need with people.”

“That’s something that I need to do.

“When the team’s so big, you need to come up with ideas on how do you unite everybody on a different continent.

“When the team is small you naturally get to talk about things. When there’s like 40 people in the team, that’s a different thing,” he conceded.

The Russian went on to stress the need to perform even when he is slightly lacking in motivation.

“There’s some key areas that you need to be doing,” he added.

“It is your motivation, because we’re human beings, and we obviously lack motivation at times like everybody else.

“We sometimes wake up in a bad mood, and we have no energy like other people, but we still have to go out there and perform.”

READ: ‘I’m here to win races’: Mazepin opens up on ‘difficult’ relationship with Schumacher

Further, Mazepin feels that he needs to learn to more accurately locate the sweet spot of the Haas car in 2022.

“And how do you put that into a very good car balance? How do you put that in to playing with the luck on your side when you’re racing?

“Because of the car being very difficult to drive and requires extra good balance, or extra work to find that good balance, that’s also something I need to improve on.”

Nikita Mazepin at the 2021 Saudi Arabia Grand Prix.v1

Mazepin has been retained for the 2022 season alongside Schumacher, and the pair will be aiming for better fortunes in the new season, which kicks off on 20 March in Bahrain.

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