Force India mechanics caught up in clash

Sahara Force India

19 April 2012 by Ryan Wood

Four mechanics with Force India were caught up in a violent clash between protestors and police on Wednesday, which has resulted in one member of the team leaving Bahrain.

The four mechanics were travelling in a hire car along the main highway in to Manama and were accidentally caught up in the protest after being forced to stop their 4x4 on the road.

A Molotov cocktail thrown by a protestor reportedly exploded close to their car and tear gas fired by police entered the cars ventilation system, but the driver managed to escape the scene. No injuries were reported.

A circuit statement confirmed the clash: "During this incident a Molotov cocktail landed in the vicinity of their vehicle.

"After approximately two minutes, the route was cleared and the vehicle carried on its journey. There were no casualties and eyewitness reports from the scene confirmed that their vehicle had not been targeted itself."

A member of the team, not involved in the incident, has flown back to the UK, citing the event as evidence that it isn't safe to be in Bahrain.

Bahrain International Circuit chairman Zayed R Alzayani says the incident was an isolated case.

"It was an isolated incident, and my wife was involved too. The protestors were not targeting the cars, they just happened to be there. Nobody was injured."

Update: A second member of the team, working with a technical supplier, has requested permission to leave the country amid concerns over their safety.