Former Haas driver Nikita Mazepin has lashed out at his ex-teammate’s run of poor performances, while also hinting that he was more than keen to join Formula 1 again.
Mazepin was axed by Haas when the Russia-Ukraine conflict broke out.
His father Dmitry Mazepin, who owned Uralkali — Haas’ key sponsors at the time — was asked to vacate his seat and Nikita also lost his ride as a result.
While Nikita was at the receiving end of a number of jokes during his short spell in F1, the Russian driver was quick to dismiss the talent of Mick Schumacher.
While Schumacher did not set the track blazing last year, this year has been particularly tricky for him.
The 23-year-old has suffered two crashes and a number of pundits have expressed their doubts over whether he is the right man for the job at Haas.
Mazepin was quick to dismiss the ability of Schumacher.
“Mick? His results speak for themselves – there is nothing to add,” Nikita said.
Although Mick did not earn a single point last year, he was consistently better than Mazepin.
This year, however, he has been shown up by Kevin Magnussen, who has displayed just how far Haas has come in a year’s time.
Mazepin vows to make return
Speaking to Russian media outlet Le Championat, Mazepin vowed a return to the sport as quick as possible.
It may take a while though, as not only did Mazepin show little to impress teams around the paddock, but with the current political climate, it would take a lot for a team to hire a Russian driver.
“I will get behind the wheel immediately at the first opportunity,” Mazepin said.
“I think if Kevin had been asked at the end of February if he would drive a Formula 1 car in a week’s time, he would definitely have said ‘no’.”
“Four months ago, I couldn’t imagine that everything would change so much. And now I can’t imagine that everything will be fine in another four months, but I hope so, anything is possible.”
Mazepin has taken inspiration from Magnussen’s performances this year, owing to the fact that the Danish driver also proved his credentials after spending some time away from the sport.
“Magnussen is in good shape after his break, he has proven himself, and I plan to do exactly the same to repeat his success story,” Mazepin said.