AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
Last year, civil unrest and rioting caused the Kingdom of Bahrain to withdraw from hosting the 2011 Bahrain Grand Prix. One year later, Formula 1 returns to Bahrain despite remaining political instability.
Authorities gave their word to assure the safety of the visiting Formula 1 community, promising to provide an enormous security presence for the event.
Unfortunately, the security measures proved insufficient when four mechanics of the Force India F1 team were caught in the middle of an incident as police clashed with protesters while the team’s hire car was stationary in Bahrain traffic after leaving the circuit yesterday.
Due to the ongoing protests in Bahrain, F1 officials have officially pulled the plug on the Bahrain Grand Prix, originally scheduled for March 13th.
F1′s governing body, the FIA, and its president Bernie Ecclestone have decided to “postpone” the opening race of the 2011 season, instead starting in Melbourne, Australia on March 27th. A new date is still being considered to the already-full 20-race schedule.
The past few weeks have been full of speculation on whether the FIA would make a statement regarding the humanitarian issue. The deadly protests in Bahrain against the monarchy are still ongoing, and holding an F1 race there after such political upheaval would have been trivial, if not disastrous.
[Sources: The Telegraph, BBC]