Drivers call for urgent action after shocking fan behaviour in Mexico

A fan managed to unzip Pierre Gasly's bag whilst in the paddock at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez.

The vibrant, noisy, and wonderfully colourful Mexican Grand Prix will unfortunately be remembered for all the wrong reasons in 2022, following a disappointing race and shocking fan behaviour during the weekend at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez.

Max Verstappen claimed yet another lights-to-flag victory at the Mexican GP, in what was his fourth win in Mexico City and his 14th of the season, meaning he claimed the record for most wins in a single season.

The opening few corners proved to be the critical moment of the race, as drivers were unable to overtake throughout the Grand Prix due to overheating issues the moment they got too close to the car in front.

It unfortunately resulted in somewhat of a precession, with fans having reacted on social media insisting that the track needs to have something done to it.

READ: George Russell says he didn’t want to be ‘too aggressive’ against Lewis Hamilton

Incidents off the track also left a sour taste at the event, which was summarised during the post-race interviews for the top three.

Whilst Verstappen and home hero Sergio Pérez were met by cheers and applause, Lewis Hamilton was victim of an onslaught of boos and jeers.

Pérez was clearly disappointed by what he was hearing, after wagging his finger in the air insisting that what the Mexican fans were doing was wrong.

Hamilton admitted during his post-race interview that it’d been an “awkward” weekend with the fans, after receiving “boos all day”.

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“This has been an amazing crowd, a bit awkward this time round – boos all day – but nevertheless I have so much love for Mexico and the people here,” Hamilton said during his post-race interview.

This wasn’t all that happened between fans and drivers during the weekend, with a number of incidents involving fans resulting in Daniel Ricciardo believing that a system needs to be put in place, “so that ticket holders know how to behave in the paddock” because “adults should act like adults”.

Pierre Gasly shockingly revealed that someone tried to get inside his backpack, which he found had been unzipped by a fan whilst walking through the paddock.

The AlphaTauri driver had personal items such as his passport in his backpack, highlighting how big an issue it is.

“It is obvious that some measures must be taken to increase our personal security,” said the Frenchman.

Carlos Sainz was another to question some of the behaviour on show from ‘VIP fans’ with paddock passes, after insisting that they don’t need to “push or shout”.

“There is no need to push or shout too loudly, but as for the rest it suits me,” said Sainz, who finished fifth.

McLaren boss Andreas Seidl took a more diplomatic approach in his explanation of some of the events that had taken place during the weekend, which has left the drivers concerned over their safety at future Mexican GPs.

Seidl admitted that the “situation” had “become extreme” during the weekend, with a solution needed for future events regarding fan access and interaction.

“I think that in general Formula 1 is moving in the right direction,” said Seidl.

“We really appreciate the atmosphere in the paddock during the whole season, but here in Mexico the situation has become extreme.

“We need to discuss this issue and find a solution, especially in countries like Mexico where the fans are very emotional. But right now it’s very important not to overreact.”

READ: ‘People have told me’: Max Verstappen makes Lewis Hamilton claim

According to reports, the FIA are working with the events promoters, Grupo CIE, to sort out the issues experienced ahead of future races in Mexico.

“We have an incredible group of fans here who are very passionate about Formula 1,” Grupo CIE said.

“However, the safety of everyone at the race, in the paddock and around the circuit is our priority and we continue to work with the FIA and teams to ensure this is the case.”