“Unfair” to bar Russian competitors from sports over war in Ukraine – Kvyat

2022 F1 season

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Russian competitors should not be barred from motor racing over the country’s war with Ukraine, former Formula 1 driver Daniil Kvyat has said.

An extraordinary meeting of the FIA’s World Motor Sport Council is being held today after Ukraine’s motorsport federation called on it to cut Russia out of international motor racing following its invasion of the country six days ago.

Other global sports have already taken steps against Russia. Its national and club football teams have been barred from competitions including the forthcoming World Cup. The International Olympic Committee, which formally recognises the FIA, yesterday recommended Russian athletes be barred from competitions as well as their Belarusian counterparts, whose country aided the military action.

Kvyat became Alpine’s reserve driver last year after losing his AlphaTauri race seat at the end of 2020. He is due to race in the World Endurance Championship with G-Drive this year.

He urged an end to the conflict in a social media post today. “I really hope for a peaceful solution to this situation in Ukraine, and that we can all live in peace,” said Kvyat. “Hopefully all parties can find a solution by sitting together and through a respectful dialogue.

“It horrifies me to see two brotherhood nations in a conflict. I don’t want military actions and wars to influence the future of humanity, I want my daughter and all children to enjoy this beautiful world.”

However Kvyat insisted it was wrong for sporting organisations to bar Russians from international competitions.

“I also would like to highlight and address all sports federations across the world including [the] IOC that sport should remain outside politics and disallowing Russian athletes and teams from participating in world competitions is an unfair solution and goes against what sport teaches us in its principle – the unity and peace,” he said.

“Who else if not us sports people will help to glue nations together in the upcoming times?”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 141 comments on ““Unfair” to bar Russian competitors from sports over war in Ukraine – Kvyat”

    1. ‘Hopefully all parties can fine a peaceful solution’………….. sorry Danny, only one ‘party’ is the aggressor, so for the peaceful solution to take place Russia must back down and move their troops out of Ukraine. That IS the peaceful solution. But because your ‘cough’ President appears to have gone barking mad, putting these kinds of sanctions on your country to isolate it from the rest of the world seems to be the only way to get the message across without the whole planet falling into war, and Russian sports starts not being able to compete is, at this time, collateral damage.

      1. Wade (@wadels1510)
        1st March 2022, 14:20

        I get the angle you’re coming from Gubstar but the issue comes in with the fact that Putin won’t care about the collateral damage of a F1 driver not being able to compete. World powers have had many years to understand Putin’s rationale and I don’t believe that banning Russian F1 drivers is going to solve much at all. Where there’s financial implications for Russia, that’s a different story, but ultimately this is just ruining someone’s career to prove a point that, in the end, won’t ever get across.

        1. @wadels1510 “ruining someone’s career” or killing innocent people? If “ruining someone’s career” can save single life, ruin them all!!

          1. How is banning all Russian athletes going to save a single life?
            Ruining the Russian economy might stop the war. Banning athletes won’t do a thing.

            1. Now I imagine “Let’s allow athletes from Nazi Germany to compete in some events in 1942….” right…
              or how about USA-Japan sporting events after Pearl Harbour? “Oh it’s sport, it’s not politics”

            2. @paeschli @wadels1510 Every single Russian is responsible on some level for what’s happening in Ukraine. Everybody who had a russian passport should have held / and still should keep their leader accountable for what he / she is doing. Putin has been a dictator for over 20 years… what have these people done to remove him from power? NOTHING! Some protests here and there, that’s not enough. They have been riding Putin’s wave because it benefited them and now the world is finally putting their foot down. They aren’t doing it to Putin, because he’s got billions already. This is done to the people of Russia who stand inactive. So absolutely ban all Russians from all countries… they need to put their monster down because this monster will kill us all with his red button. He is sick, there is no diplomacy to be had. Once his removal from power by his own people will suffice.

            3. @paeschli There is no point discussing anything with #putinsimpatizer

            4. Noframingplease (@)
              2nd March 2022, 18:15

              @ Patrick, welcome in the real world Patrick. Fortunately mister Bakk has given you the right answer.

          2. Wade (@wadels1510)
            1st March 2022, 20:06

            I once again, understand your concern. But think about it this way, with Putin having the mindset that he does, do you really think he’ll kill any less people if Kvyat and Mazepin are out ? In my opinion, that answer is no. Hence why I say banning Russian drivers is not going to solve the issue.

            1. @wadels1510 ABSOLUTELY! But not in the way you think. NATO can’t stop Putin, Ukraine maybe can but at high price of lives, one Russian can’t stop Putin, 1000 Russians can’t stop Putin but what about 1 Million? what about 10 Millions? That is why Russians with any significant social following are critical for stopping this war by showing resistance and organising protests… yes thousands will get beaten and arrested but that is the lowest price of all available options to dethrone Putin.

      2. Drivers (former or not) don’t need to think as we do. That is their right. That for me is the end of story. I won’t like him, but I don’t see how anyone can lose a job over it. That’s not what democracy is. The rights are for everyone, as long as they respect the law. They can vote for whoever they want. Same as the Brits voted for Blair who bombarded a European country for three months and no need to speak of other interventions because only Europe matters here. What about Saudi invasion in Yemen? We just got ourselves a brand new Saudi GP. Hypocrites everywhere, you people are terrible.

        1. I would say the hypocrisy is a result of racism. Two different approaches to the same problem (refugees) depending on race. The Ukrainian crisis have sadly exposed the truth about unspoken racism hidden under the values of freedom, democracy, humanity… Major western media outlets (CBS news, Al-Jazeera English, Telegraph…) have aired racist views live in the last days. No one seems to be shocked either. Even politicians at the highest levels have rode the racist waive.

          The Bulgarian PM went to say “These are not the refugees we are used to; these people are Europeans, These people are intelligent. They are educated people…. This is not the refugee wave we have been used to, people we were not sure about their identity, people with unclear pasts, who could have been even terrorists.”

          It has been reported that Africans, Middle Easterns and South Asians fleeing Ukraine are struggling to cross borders and priority was given to the Ukrainians.


          1. I’ve heard the same from reporters and commenters. It’s almost funny to hear Europeans saying that killing civilians and wars of aggression and massive dislocations of people are an alien concept in Europe. Europe sadly has excelled in these areas. We haven’t learned and ignoring the past doesn’t help.

            1. @dmw
              “It’s almost funny to hear Europeans saying that killing civilians and wars of aggression and massive dislocations of people are an alien concept in Europe. Europe sadly has excelled in these areas.”

              You’re just showing your ignorance here. Europe is the most technologically advanced civilisation, therefore as a result our wars have been the most “explosive” but also the most well documented. In the end we have created democracy and the most stable and prosperous continent on the planet that people from everywhere else flock to.

              When Ukrainian soldiers catch their invader’s soldiers captive, they give them medical help and even let them call their families. That’s a level of civilization and level of humanity not seen on other continents.
              For comparison, you go and research conflicts in Asia or Africa for comparison, e.g. the massacres in Rwanda in 1994 where Hutu civilians (!) raided Tutsi villages with machetes and slaughtered them with African levels of violence (like ripping unborn babies from pregnant women’s bellies with knives, cutting people’s knee-caps with machetes so that they can’t run away and then slicing them alive). You go research that, mate, to get some perspective.

            2. Noframingplease (@)
              2nd March 2022, 18:25

              Hey Dave, nice you are referring to facts like they happened yesterday. Every country has is dark side, but europe had for decades no active role in wars. It doesn’t help to start a discussion like europe is still the colonial power.

          2. @tifoso1989
            Everything the Bulgarian MP said is correct. The Ukrainians are not some people from an alien continent and culture, they are Europeans and belong to Europe’s largest ethnic group – the Slavic people.
            We, Poles e.g., help them because they as Slavs are our blood brothers. Simple as that.
            What do you not understand about Europeans wanting to help other Europeans more than foreign people from regions of the world whose cultures are in opposition to our own?
            Do you love every woman you see on the street as much as your own mother?

          3. Noframingplease (@)
            2nd March 2022, 18:33

            @tifoso1989 Why picking up the racism card when the truth is maybe a bit less complicated. Ukrain is the backyard of europe. Sorry that we pay a bit more attention for troubles in our own part of the world cuze the consequences are also mostly for europe.

            1. @nofanboysplease
              I’m not picking up the race card but sorry if I have a different view on humanity than you do. Humanity cannot be divided, any human being deserve to have human rights. Period. By your logic, it’s fine to abuse non-European people. Then why complain if Putin is using the same excuse to abuse and kill Ukrainians. Any abuse of human rights must be named, shamed and sanctioned. If you don’t agree with that you’re free but don’t complain when it happens to you or to your beloved ones.

          4. Yes, racisms certainly played a role there, and is likely to play up again and again @tifoso1989, since you posted this a few days ago, let us also note that instead of the usual “nah, not true, you are making this up, this is not us” reaction we have become all too used to hearing from most governments when such issues come up, the Ukrainians have actually reacted very well to this.

            Their ministry of foreign affairs contacted people this happened to, they contacted their embassies but most importantly they took steps, made video messages and concrete contact places where anyone who finds themselves in such a situation can call and get support. All of that is a positive I have not seen in hardly any instance before from any country.

            1. @bascb
              Thanks for your comment. Nothing but respect to Ukraine’s brave response to the issue of foreigners struggling to leave Ukraine. They have already showed bravery facing the Russian aggression and are resisting with everything they have. That’s the kind of behaviour expected to face what some idiots come up in terms of racism.

            2. You are welcome. I myself was greatly relieved as well as impressed by the solid reaction from Ukraine, once again. I can only hope that this positive and inspiring spirit holds as long as we all can muster now, sadly we will need a lot of it in the coming weeks, months and possibly years @tifoso1989.

          5. Noframingplease (@)
            4th March 2022, 18:13

            @tifoso1989 did I mentioned things about human right etc? No, so please don’t fill in the gaps with lessons in humanity, cuze we don’t have a different view about that. My comment was about your simplification of the ukraine situation, and the double standard europe plays in that. Calling racism as the main problem is a too big simplification about the darker side of human being. People are manipulated by propaganda to grow hate against certain groups etc. Racism isn’t the basis of wars but an instrument for totalitarian leaders to achive their goal. With propaganda they give people argumentation for their miserable situation. Hitler did that with the germans, Trump blamed the mexicans for everything.

        2. People in Ukraine are dying and we’re supposed to feel for Danny not being able to compete? I don’t think so.

          (Let’s not compare this to Serbia please…)

        3. You will find that you have been miseducated about what democracy is or isn’t. (likely among other things)

          And if you looked, you may find yourself part of a demos in need of some good old democracy, if indeed you are unhappy with the events of the past week and willing to direct your frustration at the person responsible.

        4. @Dean “Same as the Brits voted for Blair who bombarded a European country for three months and no need to speak of other interventions because only Europe matters here.” Serbia should have been bombarded much earlier and much harder and that would save lives in Bosnia and Hercegovina, Croatia, Slovenia and Kosovo.

          1. Nikos (@exeviolthor)
            2nd March 2022, 5:38


            You use the same rhetoric as Putin does.
            Also comparing Kosovo to Croatia and Bosnia is ignorant.

            1. @exeviolthor Go f…yourself you maggöt. There is zero diference between Bosnia and Hercegovina, Croatia, Slovenia and Kosovo and that is Serbian politic of expansion on countries that wanted independence. I know that from 1st hand since I lived Bosnia and Hercegovina, Croatia, Slovenia and Kosovo wars personally.

            2. Nikos (@exeviolthor)
              2nd March 2022, 9:33


              I guess that referring to people as maggots makes it easier for you to talk about bombing them.

              All of the cases you mention above are exactly what Putin is doing to Ukraine and previously did to Georgia.
              He had a “referendum” and then proclaimed that he helps them gain their independence.

              What Serbia did was wrong and what Putin does is also wrong, but it is the actions of the US and their coalition that is giving him leverage to invade Ukraine.

              Finally you need to realize that wars start when both sides think that they are right.

            3. @exeviolthor Yes, people like you, who try to rationalization actions for “big serbia” and “big rusia”, I find really easy squashed as maggots.

            4. Nikos (@exeviolthor)
              2nd March 2022, 10:37

              I am not rationalizing any actions by either of them. I only said that you use the same rhetoric as Putin. Calling me a maggot actually proves this.
              Even if what I said is wrong, when you participate in a forum you need to expect that not everyone will agree with you. Hurtling insults at them does not strengthen you position.

            5. @exeviolthor “I am not rationalizing any actions by either of them.” I told you, you know nothing about serbians and russians or are one off them, so shut the f…. up!

            6. Nikos (@exeviolthor)
              2nd March 2022, 19:19


              Given that you can fight me only with written insults can you explain to me in what way are you different to Putin please?
              The only difference between you and him is that he has an army at his disposal whereas you only have your keyboard.

            7. @exeviolthor Did I hurt your fragile little putin loving ego? Shut the f…. up!

            8. Nikos (@exeviolthor)
              3rd March 2022, 3:01


              Thank you for this constructive feedback.
              I suggest that you see a therapist.

            9. @exeviolthor Shut the f…. up, you putin lackey!

            10. Nikos (@exeviolthor)
              3rd March 2022, 7:15


              This is my last reply in this thread as you obviously do not want to have a meaningful conversation.

              Try reading what I have writren and you will see that I do not support Putin’s war.
              On top of that, though, I do not support any war at all. My original reply was to your post that bombing the Serbians harder and earlier would have saved lives.

              Bombing by its nature cannot save lives. It only kills more innocents. It is exactly what we see happening in Ukraine. Can’t you see this?

            11. @exeviolthor No, bombing serbia much earlier would prevent war in Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Hercegovina and Kosovo, because one maggot by the name slobodan milosevic (backed by russia) wanted big serbia… You have zero knowledge about the issue!!! So one again, shut the f… up.

      3. why did this war start?

        1. @floodo1 Beats me.

        2. EGO, and a lust for power.

        3. Tzar put in want to restore the former tzar reich.
          Democracy is only meant for voting on the tzar.
          That’s the Russian concept of democracy.
          But the people do not want this but seem powerless.

        4. David Starkey has a go at answering that question.


          1. This is on point. Thanks for sharing.

        5. some racing fan
          2nd March 2022, 5:59

          Because Ukraine wanted to join NATO and Putin doesn’t want a NATO country with a decent-sized economy like (potentially) Ukraine bordering Russia. And Finland isn’t part of NATO.

          1. Norway is though. As is Poland

      4. I luv chciken
        1st March 2022, 17:09

        Sorry Danny. You’re trying to straddle the fence and it isn’t working. There is only one aggressor here. Make some definitive comments. Your statement of omission, brands you as a supporter of Russia’s policies
        of world domination.

      5. Danny would greatly benefit his argument if he condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

      6. My main problem is the lack of condemnation in Kvyat’s words. I don’t think it makes a lot of sense to punish all Russian athletes. Make them race without the Russian flag sure. Forbid sponsorships from Russian companies linked to the Kremlin.

        Still, I don’t like Kvyat’s statement. It feels very self-interested. For a guy that could comfortably retire with the money he’s made, it just feels tone-deaf to declare the unfairness of a Russian athlete ban without strongly condemning what his country is doing. Maybe he needs to be careful because he has family in Russia and can’t really speak out. But if that’s the case, maybe say nothing then.

      7. I am sure you were equally potent in condemning countries other than Russia for invading other countries. Here’s the list of countries that USA and NATO invaded since the WWII:
        China 1945-46

        Korea 1950-53

        China 1950-53

        Guatemala 1954

        Indonesia 1958

        Cuba 1959-60

        Guatemala 1960

        Belgian Congo 1964

        Guatemala 1964

        Dominican Republic 1965-66

        Peru 1965

        Laos 1964-73

        Vietnam 1961-73

        Cambodia 1969-70

        Guatemala 1967-69

        Lebanon 1982-84

        Grenada 1983-84

        Libya 1986

        El Salvador 1981-92

        Nicaragua 1981-90

        Iran 1987-88

        Libya 1989

        Panama 1989-90

        Iraq 1991

        Kuwait 1991

        Somalia 1992-94

        Bosnia 1995

        Iran 1998

        Sudan 1998

        Afghanistan 1998

        Yugoslavia – Serbia 1999

        Afghanistan 2001

        Libya 2011

        Iraq and Syria 2014 –

        Somalia 2011 –

        Iran 2020 –

        Were you equally loud in defending their rights as well?

        1. You make a point for sure and one I agree with, buy you cannot seriously be including Bosnia in that list – there was an incontrovertible genocide happening and if anything the Western powers didn’t do enough early enough @sermilan besides which, also listing the countries that Russia/the Soviet Union and others invaded in that time span would be a less tendentious way to go about it.

        2. Your list is not correct or you wanted to list conflicts? you know the UN isn’t Nato right?

          The first entry China 1945-1946 has nothing todo with USA and Nato but with the Communist and Nationals civil war and the Japanese surrender……

          Now i could answer every entry but you think the west has something to do with all conflicts

      8. Gubstar – Did you advocate the banning of all British and American sports people because of their Governments’ illegal war of aggression against Iraq?

        1. I don’t advocate the banning of any athlete. My retort was just a response to Danny’s quote, giving an explanation as to why they were considering it and highlighting the only peaceful solution to this mess. The ‘whataboutism’ that seems to be rife amongst all the comments just shows the ignorance on this topic. And just for the record, being British, I am all for Tony Blair and George Bush going to prison for the war crimes they committed in the early 2000’s. Just as Putin should face the same for what’s happening right now.

    2. Innocent people should not die. A autonomous country shouldn’t be attacked from another country. Or is this fair?
      The russian citizens, which Daniil Kvyat is one of, has elected the russian president. So they all are responsible, don’t they?

      1. And western countries killed 1000s of innocent civilians in Iraq over imaginary weapons of mass destruction. Without any approval of the UN. So, basically did the same Russia does now. I don’t remember anyone was held responsible for that.

      2. I would hardly call him “elected”. Plus there’s been plenty of protests against Putin. Many didn’t, or didn’t want to, vote for him.

      3. MichaelN