One of Red Bull Racing’s junior Formula 1 drivers, Jüri Vips, has been suspended by the team after being caught using a racial slur during a Twitch livestream.
21-year-old Estonian Vips is the reserve driver for Red Bull for the 2022 season, sitting behind 2021 world champion Max Verstappen and his teammate Sergio Perez.
He’s driven in practice sessions for the Red Bull team and is commonly looked at as a future star, but that has come into disarray.
On June 21, Red Bull put out the following statement, confirming that Vips had been suspended with immediate effect, “pending a full investigation into the incident.”
— Oracle Red Bull Racing (@redbullracing) June 21, 2022
The suspension came after Vips allegedly used racist language while playing Warzone with fellow Red Bull junior Liam Lawson, who was streaming at the time.
In the clip that has since gone viral, Vips used the N-word against an opponent, before his teammates say his name, subtly telling him that he messed up, before laughing at the incident.
so out of line from juri, disgusting to hear pic.twitter.com/0hlVyLDAN6
— 🍊 (@vodkaredbulI) June 21, 2022
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In another clip, he was accused of calling a Red Bull hat “gay,” with fans assuming it was because the hat is pink.
Here is the clip where his masculinity is so fragile he can’t even wear a pink hat pic.twitter.com/Ia9ilku09j
— Alice (@alice_nyoom) June 21, 2022
Vips himself put out a statement on Instagram later that day, apologizing for what was said on the stream.
The statement read: “I wish to unreservedly apologize for the offensive language used during a live gaming stream earlier today. This language is entirely unacceptable and does not portray the values and principles that I hold. I deeply regret my actions and this is not the example I wish to set. I will cooperate with the investigation fully.”
View this post on Instagram
Lawson has not commented publicly on the matter.
As of writing, there is no timeframe set for when the investigation into the incident could be finalized.