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Red Bull Racing suspends Juri Vips for using racial slur on Twitch

Red Bull Racing has suspended junior driver Juri Vips after he used a racial slur while streaming on Twitch.

On Monday, Vips streamed Call of Duty: Warzone with fellow Red Bull junior driver Liam Lawson. As has been clipped, Vips cursed and said the n-word, to which Lawson replied “Juri!” and laughed.

Lawson also asked Vips to wear a pink Red Bull cap, to which he replied “No, that’s gay”. Lawson responded: “Juri, you can’t say that”.

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A statement from Red Bull Racing says Vips has been suspended “from all team duties with immediate effect, pending a full investigation into the incident”.

It continues: “As an organisation we condemn abuse of any kind and have a zero-tolerance policy to racist language or behaviour within our organisation”.

Vips apologised in an Instagram post. “I wish to unreservedly apologise for the offensive language used during a live gaming stream earlier today,” he wrote.

“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.”

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Vips is an Estonian racing driver currently competing in Formula 2 with Hitech Grand Prix.

He’s not the only driver to spend his spare time on Twitch. Lando Norris, F1 driver for McLaren Racing, has 1.3m followers on Twitch and was recently featured by tech brand Elgato.

Sadly, though, Vips is not alone in his suspension. American racing driver Kyle Larson was suspended in 2020 after using a racial slur during an iRacing event. NBA player Meyers Leonard was suspended by Miami Heat and fined $50k by the NBA in 2021 for using an antisemitic slur during a Twitch stream, for which esports organisation FaZe Clan cut ties.

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