DirtFish can reveal the events which led up to spectators being jailed at last week’s Croatia Rally.
The much publicized incident involved brawling fans lying in the road just moments before Sébastien Ogier’s Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 flew over the jump. Three men have been jailed for seven days for assaulting a police officer.
The incident began when a drink was spilled in the crowd. One fan then threw an object at another fan and the incident – which was videoed and shared on social media – unfolded. Marshals and a Croatian police officer quickly intervened and moved the men back to the crowd.
Chairman of the organizer Daniel Šaškin told DirtFish: “This was a crazy situation. Fortunately we have a lot of marshals in these places. What you don’t see from the video is that we have more marshals on the other side of the jump who were ready to stop the car.
“This is, of course, no excuse for the behavior and for what happened. This will never be tolerated and sending these people to jail is a strong message to fans coming to our country to watch rallies.”
Šaškin admitted the incident saddened him and his team.
“You know the police informed me we had more than 400,000 fans coming to the rally last week,” he said. “It’s sad that these three idiots, total stupid idiots, did what they did. You look to the 99.9% of the other fans and they were fantastic.
“Come and look with me to the stages, you will see they cleaned up all of their trash, they were so well behaved. Like always, it’s a very small minority who can spoil things for the others.
“Like I said, we will not tolerate this. Right now, I want to say thank you to the 2000 marshals who worked so hard during our event to get this right.”