F1: Interlagos security responsibility of promoter, local authorities

Formula 1 has responded to the multiple security breaches and robbery incidents through last weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix at Interlagos by saying the responsibility to shore up measures and prevent attacks lies with the promoter.

A Mercedes minibus was robbed at gunpoint on Friday when leaving Interlagos, while a Pirelli van was also targeted on Sunday following the race, leading to the cancellation of the tyre test planned to be held at the circuit this week over safety fears.

The incidents led to widespread condemnation of the security measures in place at Interlagos by the paddock, with a spokesperson for F1 saying the responsibility to make changes lies with the local promoter in Brazil.

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“We are extremely disappointed with the events of last week. In fact, disappointed is not even a strong enough word,” the spokesperson told Press Association.

“But is not our call, and it is not our responsibility. Security within the circuit is up to the promoter, and they have to liaise with the local authorities.

“We have our own security team that travels with us, and they were liaising with the local authorities. We are actively involved, but we cannot be experts in every city we go to.

“We don’t want these things to happen. We have a year between now and the next race to get it sorted, and we would be extremely disappointed if things have not been looked at.

“I am sure the local authorities are taking it seriously. People leaving the circuit are exposed and it is obvious that they are at a disadvantage and that is something that needs to be addressed.”

The Brazilian Grand Prix’s existing F1 contract at Interlagos is due to run to 2020, although the weekend’s incidents have led to questions about the long-term future of the race.

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