Haas almost lost Uralkali sponsorship in 2021


In a preview of the forthcoming series of Drive to Survive it is revealed that Dmitry Mazepin was close to pulling his company's sponsorship of Haas last season.

As Nikita Mazepin was being consistently outshone by his teammate, Mick Schumacher, the youngster blamed his car, saying, among other things, that his car was heavier than the German's.

Team boss, Guenther Steiner eventually admitted that there was a weight discrepancy between the two drivers cars however this was dependent "on the weight distribution" and nothing sinister.

After the summer break, the team finally provided Mazepin - seen here being explained to the difference between Schumacher's car being lighter and smaller or far away - with a different car, though whether this improved his performance is probably best left to readers' discretion.

What the Drive to Survive preview reveals is that in Spain, Dmitry Mazepin told his son's advisor, former racer Jesper Carlsen that unless Haas resolved the situation the sponsorship deal was under threat.

"If it doesn't change, I will send an official letter that we stop financing and stop racing," warned the Russian. "It will be a huge problem with the money and they will decide what to do because we will not keep this 'let's do, let's do, let's try, let's try'.

"We already tried for three races and if we remove the Uralkali, we stop racing," he added. "Switch the cars. Everybody knows that someone has an advantage."

Steiner, who had repeatedly told Mazepin Jr "It's the same car... as much as you believe it's not, it's the same car", when advised of Dmitry Mazepin's threat tells Carlsen: "I don't want to go there on an interview".

Once issued with a different car, Mazepin said the change had "massively improved" his one-lap pace, though outwardly it appeared to make not a blind bit of difference to his performance or results.

Article from Pitpass (http://www.pitpass.com):

Published: 03/03/2022
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