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British GP – Chaos at Silverstone: Russell makes a mess, Zhou capsizes and a group of activists take to the track

British GP – Chaos at Silverstone: Russell makes a mess, Zhou capsizes and a group of activists take to the track

The first lap of the British Grand Prix had it all, with Max Verstappen storming the lead from Carlos Sainz at the start and George Russell unleashing chaos from behind.

Much was expected from the start at Silverstone, home of the British Grand Prix. Max Verstappen made his intentions clear by opting for the soft tires to start the race, even if it cost him to be forced to follow a two-stop strategy.

Meanwhile, Carlos Sainz thought more in the long term and chose the medium tires to keep the option of a single pit stop open. And the move went well for Verstappen at the start, because he immediately took the first position, although a few corners later all this went into the background.

Guanyu Zhou capsizes and ends up on the fence

And it is that, at the start, Guanyu Zhou started very slowly, allowing Pierre Gasly and George Russell to gain ground. While the Frenchman positioned himself to the right of him, the British driver from Mercedes did the same with the AlphaTauri driver, but at one point he turned further to the left, triggering the accident and causing the Alfa Romeo to overturn.

The Chinese has started to slide upside down on the track, crossing the entire gravel run-off and jumping the tire barrier. Finally, the metal fence stopped the car, which was left between the tires and the fence itself.

After several minutes of uncertainty, the FIA ​​has reported that Guanyu Zhou has not suffered any relevant injuries, being transferred to the medical center to check his condition thoroughly.

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Other drivers involved in the chaos on the finish straight included Alexander Albon, Esteban Ocon and Yuki Tsunoda. The Alpine driver managed to return to the pits and the team went to work on his car to try to repair it in time to resume the race after the red flag.

Protests and track invasion

But the accident has not been the only relevant thing in this first lap, as a group of activists who warned days ago that they would try to boycott the Formula 1 Grand Prix have tried to achieve their goal.

Despite this, the security of the Silverstone circuit has not been able to contain said boycott and some of them have jumped onto the track at turn 7. However, as the red flag was declared for the accident before the drivers reached that point, there has been no incident.