Let’s dive into some F1 drama…
First things first – the goal of this post is to let people know what #NoToMazepin is all about. These are the views of many members of the F1 community, but not all. Nonetheless it’s important to understand what’s happening behind the scenes.
So, with that let’s get started…
Who is Nikita Mazepin
The son of a billionaire, Mazepin is a Russian racing driver and soon to be 2021 F1 rookie, racing for Haas. He has a vast open-wheel background finding traction in the numerous ladder series. Mazepin has concluded two-seasons in F2 with two wins for Hitech Grand Prix in 2020 and raced in the GP3 series in 2018 and the F3 European Championship in 2016-17.
A Punch in the Face
In Mazepin’s 2016 F3 season the driver made headlines following an altercation with Callum Ilott. In a practice session Mazepin was blocked and in turn he lost his temper. Following the incident Mazepin approached Ilott shared some unsavory words and punched his competitor in the face giving him a black eye.
Mazepin was quickly banned from the first race of the season and although he had created a reputation for himself was soon back and racing.
Mazepin’s Numerous Penalties…
It’s hard to ignore the numerous ‘slaps on the wrist,’ given by stewards to Mazepin during the 2020 season. In a 24-race schedule, F2 drivers are allotted 12 penalty points until an automatic one-event ban. Most drivers don’t come close to this, some don’t get any penalty points in a single season, but Mazepin recorded 11 in his 2020 year. His penalties were the result of driving numerous competitors off track and illegal blocks.
Ultimately fans worry for the safety of their favorite drivers and with someone with Mazepin’s history coming in, supporters are scared he may cause serious harm on track. We will have to see how the change in car and competition mature Mazepin in 2021.
December 2020 Incident
After being named a Haas F1 driver for 2021, Mazepin was soon involved in a scandal. In an Instagram story Mazepin was seen inappropriately touching a girl who was sitting in the back seat of a car. The girl, now revealed to be a friend of Mazepin, was seen ‘flipping the bird,’ and soon F1 fans came to voice their opinion.
“Hi guys, I just want to let you know Nikita and I have been good friends for a long time and nothing from that video was serious at all! We trust each other so much and this was a silly way of joking between us. I posted this video on his story as an internal joke. I am truly sorry. I can give you my word he’s a really good person and he would never do anything to hurt me or humiliate me.” Instagram user @almadelcaribe (the woman involved) wrote on the social media.
A Haas team statement: “Haas F1 Team does not condone the behaviour of Nikita Mazepin in the video recently posted on his social media. Additionally, the very fact that the video was posted on social media is also abhorrent to Haas F1 Team. The matter is being dealt with internally,” the team said in a statement.
Since then, no more information has come from Haas regarding this incident other than the continued support for their future driver.
Let’s Wrap-It Up
Many believe that Mazepin will only be driving for Haas because of the money he can bring to the team. Many are disappointed in Haas and in turn the series as a whole. Many are concerned for the safety of drivers. This is what’s happening with #NoToMazepin.