F1, along with plenty of other sports, has held events in more than a few countries with dodgy human rights records, I’m looking at you China and Bahrain to name but two but a look at my inbox this morning shows that the Race of Champions have gone for the big one, holding their 2018 event in Saudi Arabia. One can only assume North Korea was not available.
Only an insane amount of cash can be the reason behind the decision to host the event here. Twitter reaction to the ROC makes it look like James Corden has had a positively good week in comparison.
Seemingly aware of the inevitable backlash, the ROC included these words in the press release:
“With women able to drive in Saudi Arabia from 2018, we feel this is an auspicious moment to be bringing a motorsport event to Riyadh”.
Yes. A paid PR person actually came up with that, thinking that a state grudgingly allowing women to do one of the most basic of things is to be celebrated. Sure, it will be great that a woman can drive to the show but she’ll still need a male relative to chaperone her otherwise it will be jail time.
My mind is well and truly boggled. I sincerely hope that drivers, sponsors, fans and viewers alike boycott the ROC, who should be utterly ashamed of themselves.