Formula One cancels contract with Russian Grand Prix

F1 had earlier called off this year's race, which was to be held in Sochi

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Formula One has removed Russia as a Grand Prix host after terminating their contract, the championship promoters announced on Thursday.

F1 decided to cancel the contract with Russian GP following the military action in Ukraine.

The decision comes after F1 announced that this year's race, which was set to take place in Sochi on September 25, had been pulled from the calendar. The contract ran until 2025.

A statement read: "Formula One can confirm it has terminated its contract with the Russian Grand Prix promoter meaning Russia will not have a race in the future."

Four-time F1 champion Sebastian Vettel and other drivers had said last week they would not have raced in Russia even if F1 had decided to go there.

The announcement was made after motorsport's governing body FIA said Russian and Belarusian drivers could still take part in its competitions in a neutral capacity.

However on Thursday, Motorsport UK announced Russian-licensed drivers are barred from competing in the country.

It means the sole Russian driver on the F1 grid - Haas driver Nikita Mazepin - will not be able to take part in July's British Grand Prix.

Mazepin's immediate future in F1 also hangs in the balance. His father Dmitry Mazepin is a part-owner of Haas' title sponsor, Uralkali.

Haas removed the branding of the Russian fertiliser company for the final day of testing in Barcelona last week.

It was latest move by a sporting body against Russia over the military action in Ukraine.

On Thursday, Russian and Belarusian athletes were barred from competing in the Beijing Winter Paralympic Games by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC).

The decision came a day after IPC said it would allow athletes from Russia and Belarus to compete when the Games begin on Friday, but only as neutral athletes.

Earlier, football's governing body Fifa and its European counterparts Uefa suspend Russia's national teams and clubs from all competitions. The Champions League final in May was also relocated from St. Petersburg to Paris.

Also, the International Tennis Federation cancelled all events in Russia and Belarus, but individual players are still competing on the men’s and women’s professional tours.

Updated: March 03, 2022, 1:13 PM