Formula 1 driver Sebastian Vettel will not start the race in Russia. Meanwhile, there are discussions as to whether the race will take place at all.
Former world champion Sebastian Vettel (Heppenheim) does not want to start the planned race in Sochi (September 25) after the Russian attack on Ukraine. The 34-year-old said he was “shocked” by the “terrible” invasion of Ukraine at a press conference on Thursday during the test drives in Barcelona: “I shouldn’t go, I won’t go.”
“I’ve made my decision”
Visibly moved and “sad” Vettel spoke about the war. “People are killed for stupid reasons,” said the Aston Martin driver, adding that Russia has a “very strange and crazy leadership.” That’s why he doesn’t want to drive in Russia. “My decision has been made,” said Vettel. And world champion Max Verstappen (Red Bull) said: “If a country is at war, it would not be right to drive there.”
Meanwhile, the formula has not yet made a decision about the race in Sochi. “Formula 1 is observing the very unclear developments just like many others and at this point in time has no further comment on the race planned for September,” said a statement from the racing series: “We will continue to monitor the situation very closely.”
Formula 1 has been running in Sochi since 2014, and Russian President Vladimir Putin has always campaigned very strongly for the Grand Prix on the grounds of the Olympic Park on the Black Sea coast. From next year, the premier class will be driving in St. Petersburg.