Ousted Mazepin cries


Ousted Mazepin cries "cancel culture", fails to condemn war in Ukraine

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Ousted Formula One driver Nikita Mazepin claims he is the victim of "cancel culture", having lost his seat at Haas. 

The American F1 team decided to part company with the Russian driver last month following Russia's invasion of Ukraine. At the same time, Haas ditched one of their primary sponsors - Uralkali - who are owned by Mazepin's father, Dmitry.

An FIA ruling had allowed Russian and Belarussian drivers to keep competing in top-level motorsport, albeit under neutral flags. But Haas took the step of removing the younger Mazepin and replacing him with Danish driver Kevin Magnussen.

Mazepin - and his father - were subsequently named in a 64-page document of individuals facing sanctions on account of Russia's invasion of their neighbour.

Dmitry Mazepin was alleged to have met with Putin on February 24, the same day that the invasion began.

"The fact that he was invited to attend this meeting shows that he is a member of the closest circle of Vladimir Putin," read the document, "and that he is supporting or implementing actions or policies which undermine or threaten the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine, as well as stability and security in Ukraine."

However, Nikita cried foul in an interview with BBC's Hardtalk this week.

"I don't agree with being in the sanctions," said the 23-year old.

"Perhaps now is not the right time because if you look at the whole situation that's happening against athletes in the general case, it's cancel culture against my country."

Mazepin also declined to speak out against the actions of Russian president Vladimir Putin.

He told the BBC, "It's very painful to see what is happening on many levels.

"My feelings have obviously changed as a human being and as a person who wants to live in a very peaceful world.

"But I see enormous risks in saying anything about this matter because I will never satisfy everyone and therefore I will remain silent publicly."

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