Greenpeace launched a carefully co-ordinated attack on race sponsor Shell at the Belgian GP – and the organisation even managed to invade the podium ceremony.
Protestors managed to get on top of the main grandstand before the start, with four of them abseiling down to eventually reveal a 20m wide banner that read ‘Arctic Oil? Shell No!.’ The protestors remained in place, dangling from the roof of the grandstand, until after the race.
Another team struck on a Shell advertising sign at the top of Eau Rouge, while paragliders flew overhead.
Incredibly during the national anthems after the race two banners rose up seemingly from nowhere on the metal fence at the front of the podium, operated by remote control. They were hurriedly removed by Alex Molina, the man responsible for the podium ceremony, while the TV director focussed in on Vettel.
Meanwhile two protestors tried to interrupt the ceremony, with one of them abseiling down on the left while security tried to pull her back up. She was removed by security after the ceremony concluded. The pair had purchased VIP Paddock Club passes at a cost of several thousand euros.
The drivers had no idea what was happening, or why there was booing from the crowd under the podium.
Greenpeace later confirmed that the podium banners had been installed “several weeks ago,” and said that 35 people were involved in the action.
Clearly today’s events will lead to more stringent security measures in the future…