KYIV, UKRAINE - FEBRUARY 24: Inhabitants of Kyiv leave the city following pre-offensive missile strikes of the Russian armed forces and Belarus on February 24, 2022 in Kyiv, Ukraine. Overnight, Russia began a large-scale attack on Ukraine, with explosions reported in multiple cities and far outside the restive eastern regions held by Russian-backed rebels. (Photo by Pierre Crom/Getty Images)

F1 monitoring Russia-Ukraine invasion very closely

KYIV, UKRAINE - FEBRUARY 24: Inhabitants of Kyiv leave the city following pre-offensive missile strikes of the Russian armed forces and Belarus on February 24, Russia-Ukraine. Overnight, Russia began a large-scale attack on Ukraine, with explosions reported in multiple cities and far outside the restive eastern regions held by Russian-backed rebels. (Photo by Pierre Crom/Getty Images)

Formula 1 bosses have refused to call off the Russian Grand Prix despite the fact that the country has bombed Ukraine, causing millions to flee the capital.

CNN published photos from the Ukrainian capital Kyiv are emerging of long lines of cars heading out of the city after Russia’s attack early Thursday morning.

Heavy traffic (above) appears to be all moving west, away from where explosions were heard this morning, with few cars going east as war erupts in Europe again.

The race in Sochi, which has been on the calendar since 2014, is set to take place on September 25.

Russia president Vladimir Putin has declared an invasion on neighbouring Ukraine.

An F1 spokesperson said: “Formula One is closely watching the very fluid developments like many others and at this time has no further comment on the race scheduled for September. We will continue to monitor the situation very closely.”

The Russian race at Sochi’s Olympic Park is due to move to Igora Drive, 40 miles north of St Petersburg, from 2023.

UEFA is understood to be drawing up contingency plans over where to host this season’s Champions League final.

The showpiece is due to take place at the the 68,000-capacity Gazprom Arena in St Petersburg on May 28.

Speaking on Wednesday, the grid’s sole Russian driver, Nikita Mazepin told Sky Sports: “I am not struggling at all because I have always been a big supporter of sport without politics. From the understanding that we have with Formula One, the race is going ahead and you will surely see me there.”

Benson: Amid the Russia-Ukraine crisis the Turkish Grand Prix has appeared on the official F1 ticketing website, the Russian race has disappeared

BBC Sport’s chief F1 writer Andrew Benson: explained: “The invasion of Ukraine by Russia this morning has inevitably led to questions about the future of the Russian Grand Prix, scheduled for 23-25 September this year.

“The race is closely associated with Russian President Vladimir Putin, who arranged for it to be held in Sochi, where he has a palace. The race is due to move to a permanent track outside St Petersburg in 2023.

“Meanwhile, members of the audience may have noticed that a Turkish Grand Prix has appeared on the official F1 ticketing website and the Russian race has disappeared. BBC Sport is told this is unrelated, and merely a development issue with the website.

The race is not the only area in which the Ukraine situation may have ramifications in F1. The US-based Haas team receive significant financial backing from their sponsorship linked to Russian driver Nikita Mazepin.

A team spokesman said: “Presently, there is no knock-on impact” as a result of the situation in Ukraine. “We are obviously monitoring the situation and will continue to do so.”

Last year’s Russian Grand Prix was won by Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, it was also his 100th F1 victory. (Additional Reporting by BBC/CNN/GP247)