Formula 1

Belgian GP set for punishment following Greenpeace protest

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The FIA could punish the organisers of the Belgian Grand Prix after Greenpeace protesters broke through security and launched a number of separate stunts on Sunday.

Before the race a number of para-gliders entered the air space above the Spa-Francorchamps circuit, an area that is normally closed during a major sporting event, while others scaled the main grandstand and abseiled down unfurling a banner saying "Arctic oil, SHELL NO!".

In an email I received, Greenpeace claim up to 35 protesters infiltrated the circuit pre-race, two of whom looked to subvert the Shell logo at the famous Eau Rouge corner, however they were quickly arrested.

While the race went without incident, the post race podium was infiltrated by remote controlled banners unfurling on the podium and another protester attempting to abseil down from the roof of the main pit building.

"It's a worry," Red Bull consultant Dr Helmut Marko told Bild newspaper.

"Imagine if it was an organisation that didn't want to unfurl banners, but wanted to set off bombs."

It is not the first time Greenpeace has chosen an F1 race to try and launch a platform, another protester ran onto the track during the formation lap of the 2004 Spanish Grand Prix.

Other such breaches of security in recent years include the Irish priest Neil Horan who famously ran down the Hangar Straight at Silverstone during the 2003 British Grand Prix and a disgruntled former Mercedes employee, who gained access to the track during the 2000 German Grand Prix at Hockenheim.

Now Bild is reporting the FIA will likely take action against the organisers at Spa for not having adequate security in place, for a race that is struggling financially that could spell disaster as Swiss newspaper Bild claims any penalty could run into the millions.

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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