Legal Action Taken by Spectators at Las Vegas F1 GP
Around 35,000 spectators have collectively filed a lawsuit against the organizers of the Las Vegas F1 GP following a major disruption during the first tests. The incident, caused by a problem with a manhole cover, forced the spectators to leave the stands after just a few minutes of driving. The tests eventually resumed, but without an audience, resulting in a significant delay.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that five individuals have been named as plaintiffs in this class action seeking over $15,000 in damages. Attorney Steve Dimopoulos, representing the affected spectators, stated, “We will defend the rights of fans who traveled great distances and paid substantial amounts to attend the race, but were deprived of that experience.”
First Practice Session Interrupted
The incident occurred when Carlos Sainz of Ferrari collided with a manhole cover at high speed, causing severe damage to his car. As a result, the first free practice session, initially scheduled for one hour, was permanently halted, allowing drivers to complete only five laps. To prevent further incidents, all manhole covers on the urban circuit had to be inspected and secured, leading to a delay in the day’s proceedings.
Delayed Second Session and Evacuation
Due to a lack of staff, including security and transportation personnel, spectators were required to evacuate the circuit after a certain hour. The Grand Prix spokesperson emphasized the priority of ensuring a safe and secure environment for fans. As a gesture of goodwill, ticket holders for Thursday received a $200 voucher to use at the official Grand Prix stores, as announced by F1 on Friday evening. Max Verstappen, the three-time reigning world champion, expressed his frustration, stating that he would have “demolished everything” if he were in their position.
The subsequent days of the event proceeded smoothly, culminating in Verstappen’s 18th victory of the season. Verstappen had already secured the championship title since early October.