Student protests threaten 2012 Canada GP

Angry students could threaten next month’s Canadian grand prix.

Protests in Montreal, regarding planned university tuition fee increases, have been turning increasingly ugly and even violent, involving the throwing of glass bottles and hundreds of arrests. According to the French language La Presse newspaper, at least one student association has specifically threatened to disrupt the F1 race, scheduled for 10 June on the nearby Il Notre Dame.

“I cannot deny that we are following this out of the corner of our eye and will continue to follow it in the coming days,” admitted race promoter Francois Dumontier.

The report said students’ chants at recent demonstrations included references to the grand prix. At a recent meeting, one association of students approved a resolution to adopt “a weekend of disruption” aimed at “the cancellation” of the race, which represents “sexist, non-environmental and elitist” values.

“It is not clear that we will be targeted,” Dumontier insisted, “but we are an international event and are ready with a safety plan ranging from dealing with simple mischief to a wider disruption. The grand prix is often targeted because we are a major event. We are not worried but we have our eyes open and will work with the public authorities,” he added.


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