The Haas F1 Team has confirmed that Danish driver Kevin Magnussen will partner Mick Schumacher for the 2022 season, after it sacked Russian driver Nikita Mazepin a few days ago.
- Magnussen previously raced for Haas from 2017-2020
- Uralkali seeking repayment of sponsorship money
Haas parts ways with Mazepin
Mazepin was sacked in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. His father is the owner of potash-mining firm Uralkali, which was Haas’s chief sponsor until the contract was terminated earlier this week. The company’s logos were removed from the car during pre-season testing as well.
With the Uralkali deal no longer in place, Haas opted to replace Mazepin. Uralkali is seeking repayment of the sponsorship money it gave the team, calling the termination “unreasonable” and saying “sports should always be free of politics and pressure from external factors.”
Magnussen to make F1 return
Magnussen raced for Haas from 2017 to 2020. Since then, he’s competed and won a race in the IMSA SportsCar Championship and also made his Le Mans 24 Hours debut in the LMP2 category.
He’s said to have signed a “multi-year” contract with the Haas team. It's unclear who will take his seat in Peugeot's new World Endurance Championship (WEC) hypercar, which is set to take to the track later this year.
Pietro Fittipaldi will fill in for Haas's first tests in Bahrain today (Thursday, March 10) before Magnussen gets in the car for final tests.
"I'm delighted to welcome Kevin Magnussen back to Haas," team principal Guenther Steiner said. "When looking for a driver who could bring value to the team, not to mention a wealth of Formula 1 experience, Kevin was a straightforward decision for us."
"Kevin's immediate availability means we can tap into him as a resource for pre-season testing alongside both Mick Schumacher and Pietro Fittipaldi. Pietro's going to be first in this week with half a day's running at the test on Thursday – that's a great opportunity for him – with Mick and Kevin doing the rest ahead of the Bahrain Grand Prix."
Magnussen said, "I was obviously very surprised but equally very excited to receive the call. I was looking in a different direction regarding my commitments for 2022, but the opportunity to return to compete in Formula 1, and with a team I know extremely well, was simply too appealing."