Because of their risky protest action at the Formula 1 race in Silverstone, six environmental activists have to answer in court. They are accused of conspiring to disrupt public order, Northampton County Police said on Tuesday.
The suspects ran disguised as stewards at the British Grand Prix during the first lap on Sunday and sat down on the asphalt. The protest by the Just Stop Oil group was directed against the global use of oil.
At the time of the campaign, the race had already been interrupted because there had been a serious accident at the start. The carriages drove slowly. Whether the Protestants were aware of this is not certain. In a normal race with top speeds, around 300 km/h at this point, they would have risked their lives, but also the driver.
Marshals brought the demonstrators off the slopes. Chief Inspector Tom Thompson was quoted as saying the action was an “incredibly dangerous decision”. The activists would have endangered the drivers, marshals and volunteers.
Another man who was arrested for the protest on Sunday has been released for the time being. Formula 1 boss Stefano Domenicali called the action “completely irresponsible and dangerous”. Four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel showed understanding “for the fears and concerns” of climate activists who have a right to demonstrations. However, the helpers at the racetrack should not be endangered. Record champion Lewis Hamilton had made a similar statement.
Carlos Sainz, who won his 150th Formula 1 race in a Ferrari for the first time, said: “I support your cause. But I don’t think it’s the best way to put yourself and others at risk. In the worst case, someone can die.”