These are days when the issue of racism came out with arrogance in motorsport. Days of words ranging from unhappy to objectionable, such as those used by Nelson Piquet towards Lewis Hamilton and those of Jüri Vips in a live one Twitch. The Estonian driver, who used discriminatory terms against blacks and gays, was pardoned by his Formula 2 team, Hitech GP, despite no longer being backed by the Red Bull Academy, which fired him yesterday.
– Hitech GP (@HitechGP) June 29, 2022
Team principal Oliver Oakes confirmed with a statement that Vips will play the 2022 season with the team: “I made the decision to leave Juri his F2 seat with Hitech for the rest of the season. It is a choice that has been thought for a long time. Allowing him to complete the season with Hitech is an opportunity for him to demonstrate, through his actions, the kind of person he is. I made it clear that the language used was unacceptable, but I chose to give him the opportunity to redeem himself. Hitech GP is composed of an inclusive work team and has never appreciated racism or abusive behavior of any kind. That said, if we live in a society where no one can make a mistake and then sincerely apologize and have a chance to redeem themselves, which society are we talking about? I don’t know why Juri said certain things. I don’t know why she was playing Call Of Duty at the time. Sure, there are things that would have been much better for his career! What I do know is that it was licensed by Red Bull as a result of his actions it is a very bad experience for him, a severe but well-deserved punishment. The reality is that there will never be a unanimous position that this punishment is sufficient, and this is understandable. I think that words and apologies are never enough to make up for it. By allowing him to race with Hitech, we are giving Juri the opportunity to show genuine remorse for his actions. He now he must take every opportunity to do so. It needs to change forever and not just to send short-term signals in his comments. While this may not suit everyone, I believe that we all deserve a second chance in life, but never a third. Juri’s reputation and self-respect are now firmly in his hands“.
A statement from Formula 2 pic.twitter.com/9nx8dhV0AH
– Formula 2 (@ Formula2) June 29, 2022
Formula 2 commented on the confirmation of Vips with a decidedly piqued statement: “Following this episode, Formula 2 would like to reiterate how theuse of racist or discriminatory terms cannot be tolerated in any environment. Hitech GP’s decision today is surprising, we would never have made it. We will monitor the situation closely with the team to ensure that such behaviors are addressed appropriately“.
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