After the unveiling of Uralkali Haas’s F1 Team‘s new branding, the World Anti Doping Agency is investigating the livery to see if it is against the restrictions that were brought in after the Russian Flag was banned following the 2014 Winter Olympics which was held in Sochi.
In comparison to the 2020 car, Haas’s new look is a dramatic change, featuring the red, white and blue colours which make up the Russian Flag. The livery has already raised concerns by many, after the Court of Arbitration for Sport announced in December, athletes from Russia were banned from competing in world championship events under the Russian Flag.
In February the Russian Automobile Federation confirmed that this ban would extend to Formula 1 as it is a world championship, meaning Mazepin cannot race under the Russian Flag this year. Mazepin is also banned from using any national flags, emblem’s and national anthem’s that represent Russia on his clothing or equipment, his equipment being his car.
Haas claims that the livery was not designed to find a way around the CAS ruling, but the WADA has revealed that the livery is being investigated.
The Uncertainty around the rules is the ruling that states : (Russian Athletes) “shall not display publicly, any national emblem or other national symbol of the Russian Federation, including without limitation, on their clothes, equipment or other personal items.”
Speaking to Motorsport.com the FIA stated : “The team has clarified the livery with the FIA – the CAS decision does not prohibit the use of the colours of the Russian flag.”
Haas team principal Guenther Steiner, states that although the individual cannot represent the Russian Flag the team can and there are no restrictions for this.
“Obviously we cannot use the Russian flag as the Russian flag, but you can use colours on a car, In the end, it’s the athlete which cannot display the Russian flag and not the team. The team is an American team.”
Nkita Mazepin admits that it is very unfortunate that the ban has come into place in his first season in Formula 1, Mazepin is expected to compete under a neutral flag but states that he is still undecided on how he will be classified.
“Currently I’m still in a discussion on how I will be classified, there is no decision yet.”