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F1 Saudi Arabian GP to go ahead as planned despite attack

According to a report by the Associated Press, Yemen’s Houthi rebel group have claimed responsibility for an attack on an Aramco oil plant, which is located around 12 miles from the F1 circuit. 

Plumes of smoke were seen billowing in the distance from the F1 circuit as opening practice neared its end, with Max Verstappen reporting to his Red Bull team that he could smell smoke. 

The second practice session was then delayed by 15 minutes after F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali called team bosses and drivers to an emergency meeting before the start of FP2. 

Domenicali informed those present that, as it stands, F1 is planning to go ahead with the Saudi Arabian GP. 

“F1 has been in close contact with the relevant authorities following the situation that took place today,” an F1 spokesperson said in a statement. 

“The authorities have confirmed that the event can continue as planned and we will remain in close contact with them and all the teams and closely monitor the situation.”

FP2 got underway at 5.15pm (GMT) with all the teams and drivers taking part.

There is due to be a second meeting at 7pm to discuss the situation further following the conclusion of Friday’s track running. 

A statement from the Saudi Motorsport Group read: “We are aware of the attack on the Aramco distribution station in Jeddah earlier this afternoon and remain in direct contract with the Saudi security authorities, as well as F1 and the FIA to ensure all necessary security and safety measures continue to be implemented to guarantee the safety of all visitors to the F1 STC Saudi Arabian Grand Prix as well as all drivers, teams and stakeholders. 

“The race weekend schedule will continue as planned. The safety and security of all our guests continue to be our main priority and we look forward to welcoming fans for a weekend of premium racing and entertainment.”


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