Mazepin banned from Hungary opener following Ilott clash

Nikita Mazepin has been banned by the stewards from competing in the opening race of the Hungaroring weekend of the FIA European Formula 3 Championship after lashing out at Callum Ilott after free practice two.

The young Russian driver was unhappy with being baulked by Ilott during the session, and the teenager has been found guilty of ‘unsporting behaviour’ after first exchanging words with the British driver before hitting him.

Ilott had cuts to his cheek and neck, and swelling around the jaw following the incident, with the Van Amersfoort Racing driver said to be ‘visible shaken’ by the whole affair.

Fritz van Amersfoort, Ilott’s team boss, was disappointed with the leniency of the punishment handed out to the Hitech Grand Prix driver, who will be able to return to the grid for the second race on Saturday afternoon.

“This is a ridiculous decision by the stewards,” said van Amersfoort. “Callum was attacked twice in the face – twice! The first reaction might be emotional, but then they were separated and he was attacked again.

“He has a black eye, he has a swollen jaw, he’s been hurt [emotionally], not just attacked. When you make a tackle on the football field and the other player kicks you, he gets a red card immediately. I’m utterly disappointed by the stewards and the FIA.”