The NGOs wrote to all the Formula One drivers asking them to “pledge their support for a free and just Bahrain by publicly condemning the ongoing human rights abuses”. Throughout the week, activists have been encouraged to contact the drivers on Twitter, using the hashtag #ReformsF1rst.
Speaking to The Guardian yesterday, Jenson Button, who races for McLaren, revealed that he had been following Twitter. He said:
I hear different things on Twitter and you cannot get away from it, but for us as a team and me as an individual, I have to believe the FIA are making the right call. We have 19 races around the world and I trust their decision not to put us in danger and it is the right thing to do.
I did not see anything last year. It is no different from 2004 in terms of what we see when we are here.
But I am sure that what we see and what the Bahrainis see is two very different things. We see the hotel, we drive to the circuit and we see the circuit. That’s it.