SAO PAULO, BRAZIL - NOVEMBER 12: Race winner Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Ferrari celebrates on the podium during the Formula One Grand Prix of Brazil at Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace on November 12, 2017 in Sao Paulo, Brazil. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Brazil, action on and off track

The 2017 Formula One Championship is almost over with the penultimate round taking place in Brazil last weekend. Whlie it was eventful on track, it was also eventful off track with mechanics from Mercedes being held up at gunpoint as they left the Interlagos Circuit after practice on Friday.

This sort of behaviour put a bad vibe throughout the rest of the weekend and culminated in the cancellation of the planned tyre test after the race with team personnel choosing not to stay behind in a situation where they were in fear for their safety. There were at least three reported attacks over the course of the weekend, and on top of Pirelli cancelling their planned tyre test, security at all events will be a hot topic at the next World Motor Sport Council meeting next month.

“In the continued spirit of positive collaboration with Formula 1, the Council will then discuss the ways in which a more consistent and effective security procedure can be applied at all events of the FIA F1 World Championship,” said the FIA in a statement.

“The findings will also be shared with other FIA championship organisers to maximise the positive impact this can have across all motor sport. Security is a cooperative effort, and the FIA will seek to work closely with F1 and all its stakeholders to maintain a safe environment for everyone working at or visiting Formula One events.”

But, back to the race, It was Ferrari’s 229th Formula One win, the fifth this season for the team and for Sebastian Vettel. For Mercedes, Valtteri Bottas’s second place was the 25th podium finish of the year for Mercedes-AMG Power.

Bottas started the race from pole – the third time he has done so in his career – and recorded his twelfth podium for the Silver Arrows.

Meanwhile, 217 Formula One World Champion Lewis Hamilton, had to stage a furious pursuit. The four-time and newly crowned World Champion was obliged to start from the pit lane after crashing out in qualifying, yet at the end of the 71 race laps, he only narrowly missed out on a podium in fourth place, crossing the finish line a mere 5.4 seconds behind Vettel.

The 68th Formula 1 season ends in just over a weeks’ time with the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix (24th – 26th November) on the Yas Marina Circuit.

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