« I know some of the people around me this year are not planning to stay for next year. », lamented Nikita Mazepin at the Brazilian Grand Prix. « I appreciate the environment I am in. Since the beginning of the year, I have been surrounded by beautiful and honest people. Unfortunately my engineer left for another team last week and he was not the only one. So yes, it’s difficult. » The situation is complicated at Haas F1 Team, his young Russian driver is clearly suffering, but his father does not intend to sit idly by.
Owner of the company Uralkali, which is the title sponsor of the Haas team, Dmitry Mazepin has decided to act in the face of difficult working conditions in Formula 1 in the context of an increasingly busy schedule: the 22 Grands Prix this season were already a record, but it will be broken next year with no less than 23 races on the program.
« The existing contract is as is, but for next year we are proposing an additional agreement, on a voluntary basis, in order to encourage the staff to stay, to be more involved and to understand that it is difficult to take care of the cars. during 23 races traveling to 23 different countries « , explains Dmitry Mazepin on the Russian channel Match TV. « The human factor is very important here, and that’s why we want to increase the motivation of the staff with the team. As sponsors, we want to be part of the team. »
Haas had no hopes for the 2021 season, which the team spent at the back of the pack, but Dmitry Mazepin does not question his involvement, nor that of his son, who has signed a new contract for next year.
« We are satisfied », assures the Minskois. “First of all, we are grateful to the team for finding mutual benefit in making this kind of deal. The team is working hard, but we see great opportunities – which we can achieve with a common effort – to achieve a better result next year. «
Mazepin in any case does not hide his desire to acquire a Formula 1 team, he who had already tried his luck with Force India when the team was placed under judicial administration in the summer of 2018; However, it was Lawrence Stroll, owner of Aston Martin, who won.
« We have big ambitions in motorsport and have tried to acquire a Formula 1 team, without success. It remains a possibility for us. It is not related to Nikita, it is determined by our plans over the long term. On the contrary, we want to expand our presence in F1. We have the Hitech team racing in Formula 4, Formula 3 and Formula 2, and the real icing on the cake would be to own a Formula 1 team to be at all levels. «
And when asked if his plans to own an F1 team revolve around Haas or not currently concern a particular team, Mazepin replies: « This does not concern a particular team. We are not currently in negotiations because everyone will take the time to see how things will go in 2022, ie which teams will be successful or not. . If suddenly a small team is successful in 2022, then inevitably its value and attractiveness will increase. «