Axed Russian GP still seeking F1 fee refund

Tue, 16 May 2023, 09:00

May 16 (GMM) Promoters of the axed Russian GP are still asking Formula 1 to return the race fee for 2022.

The race at Sochi, and the remainder of the Russian GP contract, was terminated unilaterally by F1 at the outbreak of the conflict in Ukraine.

“They owe us money,” promoter Alexey Titov told the Russian news agency Tass.

“We ask Formula 1 to return it. It was paid but there was no spectacle.

“They admit that there is a debt so in this sense there is no litigation, but they say that they are technically unable to return the money.

“We, as an organisation, were once controlled by VTB Bank, which was a technical sponsor, so there are legal sanctions barriers for the return of funds,” Titov added.

“Is there any hope of getting the money back? Of course – this is the country’s money and I’m not afraid of saying it.”

China has not hosted a single grand prix since the outbreak of the covid pandemic, but FIA inspectors have now visited the Shanghai circuit to restore F1 approval – with a revival of the Chinese GP now expected for 2024.

As for Russia, however, Titov says the promoters are no longer interested in F1.

“I don’t miss Formula 1 a bit,” he said. “They left and we had the opportunity to establish our competitions, which we did.

“This was only a plus for everyone.”

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