Brazilian Grand Prix organisers to be investigated by FIA over serious safety breach

The São Paulo Grand Prix organisers have been referred for investigation to the FIA World Motor Sport Council after a track invasion at the end of Sunday’s event.

A large group of spectators broke security lines and accessed the Turn 1 run-off area as the race was finishing, with the stewards’ report suggesting security was not ‘enforced and/or sufficient’, which resulted in an unsafe situation.

It marks a difficult end for the organisers after infrastructure took a hit during Friday’s qualifying session as a freak storm hit Interlagos, with a grandstand roof collapsing and other facilities damaged.

Stewards report

Having found the organisation in breach of the FIA International Sporting Code, the race stewards report read: “SPF1 [São Paulo F1] candidly admitted the failures in terms of the security protocols and safety measures.

“SPF1 concurred with the FIA Sporting Delegate and the Race Director report and agreed that comparable circumstances already occurred in Brazil and that this was an unacceptable situation which could have had disastrous consequences.

“SPF1 stated, in mitigation, that they would conduct a thorough investigation and take steps to remediate in time for the next event in Brazil.

“In the circumstances, the Stewards hereby determine that: a. SPF1 breached Article 12.2.1.h of the 2023 FIA International Sporting Code and; b. SPF1 urgently (i.e. at the latest by 30th January 2024) present a formal remediation plan to the FIA that adequately addresses the serious concerns above.

“As this relates to serious issues around safety and security, the Stewards hereby request the FIA to review and comment on whether the abovementioned steps are adequate to address the concerns raised and to state if any further measure(s) need to be taken, as soon as possible.

“This should be done directly with SPF1.

“In addition, the Stewards hereby formally refer this incident to the FIA World Motor Sports Council for a further investigation to determine whether any additional steps need to be taken or penalties applied beyond the remediation plan presented by SPF1 (and reviewed by the FIA) to ensure the safe and orderly conduct of future events in Brazil.”

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