The 2011 Brazilian Grand Prix may have been the race where Red Bull won the season’s Constructor’s Championship, but the weekend was also marred by a number of scary incidents involving armed attacks directed at some Formula One personalities, including reigning World Champion and McLaren driver Jenson Button.
According to the Press Association, Button, along with his father, trainer, and manager were headed back to their hotel after the qualifying session on Saturday when six armed attackers with machine guns attacked the armored vehicle. Button didn’t say anything about shots being fired at the car, but fortunately, their driver possessed extensive training in avoidance driving, which proved to be extremely useful during the incident as he was able to drive away from the scene by, according to Button, ‘bouncing off about five cars’.
Later on, it was also learned that three engineers from Sauber Motorsports were also given an unfortunate reality check on the rampant number of crimes in Sao Paulo after it was reported that they were robbed after leaving the Interlagos circuit after the qualifying session. This time around, the group was driving in a minivan when, during a stop light, the vehicle was surrounded by five robbers, with one of them wielding an automatic weapon. The robbers ended up stealing a number of items from the Sauber engineers, including two backpacks that had one of the engineer’s passports in it.
Talk about not feeling welcome.