Russian Formula 2 driver, soon-to-be Formula 1, Nikita Mazepin faces scrutiny after posting a video of himself groping a young woman in a car.
Mazepin posted the video to his Instagram story but has since deleted the images after fans called out his actions.
The 21-year-old Mazepin is expected to race for the American Formula One team Hass next season. However, they released a statement this morning saying they found his behavior “abhorrent,” and they would be dealing with the matter internally.
Haas posted their statement to Twitter: “Haas F1 Team does not condone the behavior of Nikita Mazepin in the video recently posted on his social media. Additionally, the very fact that the video was posted on social media is also abhorrent to Haas F1 Team.”
They added in a second tweet, “The matter is being dealt with internally, and no further comment shall be made at this time.”
Mazepin apologized for the video’s contents
Mazepin has since gone back onto Instagram to apologize and release his own statement.
He wrote in his story: “I would like to apologize for my recent actions both in terms of my own inappropriate behavior and the fact that it was posted onto social media.”
“I am sorry for the offense I have rightly caused and to the embarrassment I have brought to Haas F1 Team. I have to hold myself to a higher standard as a Formula One driver and I acknowledge I have let myself and many people down.”
He finished his statement with a promise: “I promise I will learn from this.”
So, what was in the Mazepin Instagram video?
In the video, Mazepin is in the passenger seat of what appears to be a Porsche, driven around by a male friend.
At one point, Mazepin turns to the back seat, where a scantily clad young woman is seated. The soon-to-be Formula One driver then puts his hand on her chest. The video is captioned with the lady’s name, followed by “she’s the best.”
The woman rejected Mazepin’s groping. She tried to move his hand away and held her middle finger up to the young driver. She then swatted the camera away.
The Haas F1 Team announced last week that Mazepin would be one of their Formula One drivers for 2021 alongside Mike Schumacher, the Formula Two champion and the son of the seven times world champion Michael.
According to the Guardian, Mazepin’s father is billionaire businessman Dmitry Mazepin, and he has invested a ton of money into the Haas F1 Team.
Sports stars and inappropriate videos online are nothing new.
Last March, Denver Nuggets point guard Jamal Murray and his girlfriend, Harper Hempel, became famous outside of sport when a sex video of the pair appeared in Jamal’s Instagram story.
The video was promptly deleted but not before it had been widely shared.
Last year, fellow basketball star Stephen Curry also suffered the indignity of nude pics being shared online. According to reports, the pics showed the basketball star’s “private parts on full display.”
Luckily, Instagram can be used for good. In September, Storm Reid proved this when she posted a heart-warming video of herself celebrating Euphoria co-star, Zendaya, winning an Emmy Award.