The decision by Formula One to cancel the Russian grand prix is the right call

Anais Lowry — a student from France currently on work placement with the News Letter — offers her insight as a long-time Formula One fan into the decision by motorsport officials to cancel the Russian Grand Prix:

Anais Lowry, a journalism and information student from France who is doing a placement at the News Letter, has been following Formula One since she was aged 10
Anais Lowry, a journalism and information student from France who is doing a placement at the News Letter, has been following Formula One since she was aged 10

The Sochi Autodrom, located on the northeastern coast of the Black Sea, has for years been the venue for the Formula One Russian Grand Prix.

The circuit was set to host its very last race in September before the event moves to Saint Petersburg.

But with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, many of us F1 fans felt that it was only right for the FIA (Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile) to cancel the grand prix.

The organisers cite the “impossibility” of holding the race in the current situation.

In addition to the grand prix being cancelled, one of formula one’s 10 teams, Haas, had until Friday morning a Russian flag livery and the logo of the Russian fertiliser company Uralkali, Haas’ main sponsor.

But many questions from fans across the world lead to a statement from the Haas F1 Team insuring “Haas F1 Team will present its VF-22 in a plain white livery, minus UralKali branding, for the third and final day of track running at Circuit de Barcelona on Friday 25 February”.

I have been following Formula One since I was 10 years old, and I am very impressed with the decision the FIA and its shareholders have made regarding this grand prix.

The situation has gone beyond politics.

It would look bad if the FIA appeared to show any support for the cruel and ferocious acts happening in Ukraine.

Instead, the FIA seems to be showing that it understands the suffering in Ukraine at this time.