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F1 axes Russian GP contract for foreseeable future

Written by Hugh Waring, Edited by Esmée Koppius

F1 has cancelled its contract with the Russian GP following the past week's events between Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The announcement comes following the cancellation of the 2022 Russian GP for both F1 and F2 competitions. Stating that it was “impossible to hold the Russian Grand Prix in the current circumstances”

F1 has released a statement early on Thursday announcing that: “Formula 1 can confirm it has terminated its contract with the Russian Grand Prix promoter meaning Russia will not have a race in the future.”

Despite race promoter Rosgonki having a contract until 2025, with the event being transferred away from Sochi to the Igora Drive circuit - designed by Hermann Tilke, approximately 40 miles away from St Petersburg in 2023.

The Sochi track has hosted an event since 2014 and was widely known for its flat, 90-degree corners, which were boring races to watch - an issue the promoters hoped to fix with its relocation. Mercedes maintained a 100% win rate at the track.

F1 race organizers were quoted saying that they expect to fill the vacated spot for the 2022 race calendar.

The announcement comes after the FIA announced that it would not ban Russian and Belarussian drivers from competing, but would need to race under an FIA flag. However, motorsport bodies like those in the UK have chosen to suspend Russian license holders from taking part in national competitions, which will affect Haas F1 driver Nikita Mazepin competing at this year's British Grand Prix.

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