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Nikita Mazepin

Ralf Schumacher: Mazepin Haas exit would be 'only right option'

With continued uncertainty over Nikita Mazepin's future in F1, his Haas teammate Mick Schumacher's uncle, Ralf Schumacher, believes that the possibility of the Russian leaving the team could be a "good decision" for the American outfit.

Mazepin shakedown 2022 Haas VF-22
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To news overview © Haas

Ralf Schumacher believes that the possibility of Nikita Mazepin exiting the Haas team would be the "only correct option" in the current circumstances.

The Russian driver's future in F1 remains uncertain amid continued ramifications in the sporting world from the country's invasion of Ukraine.

Earlier this week, an extraordinary meeting of the World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) was called by new FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem to discuss matters relating to the ongoing crisis.

Following this, the FIA confirmed in a statement that Russian drivers will be allowed to compete in their championships in a neutral capacity and under the 'FIA flag', subject to specific conditions.

Haas declined to comment on the statement, adding to the uncertainty over Mazepin's position.

Schumacher: Mazepin and Haas split could be "good decision"

Schumacher - uncle to Mazepin's teammate, Mick Schumacher - says that it is a "difficult" scenario for Mazepin, but believes that the possibility of him leaving the team would be the right call.

"It's a shame for Nikita, who can't do anything about it at all," Schumacher told Sky Sports Germany.

"It's a difficult situation, but the separation is the only right option at the moment. From a sporting point of view, the separation can be quite a good decision for the team."

The former F1 driver also expects Haas to sever ties with sponsor Uralkali, a Russian potash fertiliser company and exporter, after the team pulled its branding during the recent pre-season test in Barcelona.

"It has to come to this complete separation now," Schumacher said.

"We have two factors: one is the pressure from outside and the other is the fact that Haas is a US team."

Haas sponsorship concerns not a worry to Schumacher

Haas team boss Guenther Steiner has previously moved to ease concerns that the squad could suffer financially if they were to drop Uralkali as their title sponsor.

Schumacher is also not worried about Haas' future in this regard, as he expects that another backer could be found.

"Guenther Steiner has stressed that the team is financially broad enough," the German added.

"I can also imagine that one or the other sponsor will now come around the corner. I believe that the team will fill this gap."

Also interesting:

F1 Podcast: All you need to know after the first pre-season test

At the end of the first pre-season test of 2022 in Barcelona, Dieter Rencken and Thomas Maher discuss the on- and off-track developments so far.

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