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Breaking news: Mazepin confirmed as Haas F1 driver for 2021

Breaking news: Mazepin confirmed as Haas F1 driver for 2021

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Breaking news: Mazepin confirmed as Haas F1 driver for 2021

Breaking news: Mazepin confirmed as Haas F1 driver for 2021

Haas has confirmed Nikita Mazepin will be one of its drivers for the 2021 Formula 1 season.

The 21-year-old Russian currently sits third in the F2 driver standings after winning feature races at Silverstone and Mugello, with four additional podiums.

Mazepin said: “Becoming a Formula 1 driver is a lifelong dream come true for me.

“I really appreciate the trust being put in me by Gene Haas, Guenther Steiner, and the whole of the team. They’re giving a young driver an opportunity and I thank them for that.

"I’m looking forward to starting our relationship together, both on and off the track, and I’m naturally keen to continue to demonstrate my abilities after a strong Formula 2 season.

"The team will be looking to me for feedback and inputs in order to refine its package for 2021 and beyond. I will take that responsibility on and can’t wait to get started.”

Haas has moved for Mazepin after opting not to renew the contracts of Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen.

Steiner said: “I’m delighted that Nikita will be driving for Haas next season,.

“Nikita has underlined his credentials in Formula 2 this year with a brace of victories and a handful of podiums in what’s been a strong sophomore season for him.

"He’s developed into a mature racer moving up through the junior ranks – notably most recently in the GP3 Series, where he finished runner-up in 2018, and obviously in Formula 2 over the past two seasons.

"I’m excited to see what Nikita can achieve in Formula 1 and we look forward to giving him the opportunity to compete at the highest level of world motorsport.

"With a record-setting 23 race schedule set for the 2021 Formula 1 championship, he’s going to get plenty of track action to learn all the nuances of grand prix racing.”

Mazepin graduated from karting into cars in 2015, competing in Formula Renault 2.0 NEC before two seasons in the Formula 3 European Championship and then a move into GP3 in 2018.

Mazepin finished as runner-up in the title fight that season with four wins, with his success leading to his drive in F2 in 2019.

Mazepin has recent F1 test experience as the Moscow-born racer topped the timesheets in Barcelona’s second in-season test day in May 2019 driving for Mercedes.

He becomes the fourth Russian driver to race in F1 after Vitaly Petrov, Sergey Sirotkin and Daniil Kvyat.

As for the second seat, the likelihood is that it will go to Mick Schumacher upon completion of the F2 season.

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