KANNAPOLIS, North Carolina (AP): The Haas Formula One team has dismissed a report claiming its parent company broke sanctions by providing machinery to Russia as “simply false.”
Haas F1 responded in a statement Thursday to a report by American broadcaster PBS on Tuesday alleging that the Haas Automation company had provided machines and parts to Russia. This would have been in violation of U.S. export control and sanctions regulations after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last year.
“That story is simply false, both in its overall impression and in many of its particular statements,” the Haas F1 team said in a statement. “The 18 machines referenced in the story left the Haas Automation factory prior to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.”
Haas added that it completely terminated its relationship with Abamet Management — its independent distributor for Russia and Belarus — on March 3, 2022, soon after the Russian invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24.
“Since that date, Haas has not sold or shipped any machines, parts, or software to Abamet or anyone else in Russia,” Haas said.
Haas Automation said in a separate statement that it also canceled 50 existing machine orders from Abamet on March 3.
Two days later, Russian driver Nikita Mazepin was dropped by the Haas F1 team and Haas also ended its sponsorship with Uralkali, the Russian fertilizer company owned by Mazepin’s father.
Dmitry Mazepin is a close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin and his son’s contract to drive was linked to the team sponsorship.