Formula One: Tighter security measures planned for Singapore F1 race after track invasion

A man venturing briefly onto the track during the Singapore Grand Prix on Sept 20, 2015.
A man venturing briefly onto the track during the Singapore Grand Prix on Sept 20, 2015. PHOTO: FORMULA 1/TWITTER

SUZUKA, JAPAN (Reuters) - Singapore Grand Prix organisers are considering tighter security for next year's race, with higher fences and more marshals, after a man intruded on to the track during last Sunday's Formula One event.

The International Automobile Federation (FIA), F1's world governing body, said in a statement on Saturday that they had received a report from Gabriel Tan, the clerk of the course at the Singapore race.

It welcomed recommendations made by Tan, who established that the 27-year-old British intruder gained access to the track after climbing a 1.1 metre high security fence to reach a protected marshal zone.

 
 
 
 

"The Singapore Grand Prix organisation is currently studying plans to increase security in identified areas," the FIA statement said. "In the affected area where the intrusion occurred, it is considering plans for the installation of higher spectator fences.

"A substantial increase in the number of marshals in attendance at the event is also being evaluated. These marshals would work hand-in-hand with the security personnel in spectator areas."

The report found that the intruder, identified in court documents as Yogvitam Pravin Dhokia, entered the circuit via a designated Egress Point - a horizontal slot allowing personnel access to the track - on the Esplanade Bridge. It said he had taken less than 10 seconds to slide through the opening and onto the track.

"The 1.1 metre fence in question is of a similar height to fencing used at a number of other F1 events," the FIA said.

Dhokia crossed the track and walked against the flow of traffic before exiting via another Egress Point where he was apprehended by marshals and handed over to police.

The report said roughly half the Egress Points around the circuit were manned by race officials, in common with most other tracks, with the remaining areas and security fences patrolled by security personnel.

Dhokia has been charged with committing an "act so rashly as to endanger the personal safety of the drivers involved in the Race...by crossing the race track while the race is on-going."