Arriving in style! Dozens of helicopters line up in Oxfordshire field to ferry VIPs and celebs to Silverstone for the British Grand Prix
- VIPs can take a private charter or a £1,200 shared shuttle from Bicester to the GP
Dozens of helicopters were spotted lining up in an Oxfordshire field to ferry VIPs and celebrities to Silverstone for the British Grand Prix.
It comes as around 150,000 racing fans descend on the home of Formula 1 for an event which usually produces plenty of fireworks.
Before seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton and Co got underway at 3pm, helicopters were spotted taking off and landing as they transported VIPs to the Northamptonshire circuit in style.
Silverstone is on a high-security alert today amid fears that the British GP could be the next high-profile sporting event targeted by Just Stop Oil after the eco-zealots tried to ruin the second Ashes Test at Lord’s and Wimbledon on Wednesday.
This afternoon, choppers were pictured in a field near Bicester which is used by Fresh Air helicopters – the official aviation partner of Silverstone.
Celebrities are either taken on private chartered helicopters or shared shuttle flights in Bicester before they are flown down to Silverstone in one of Fresh Air’s ‘large fleet of VIP spec twin engine helicopters’.
Dozens of helicopters have lined up in an Oxfordshire field to ferry VIPs and celebrities to Silverstone
Choppers were pictured on the ground at a farm near Bicester which is used by Fresh Air helicopters – the official aviation partner of Silverstone
Celebrities are either taken on private chartered helicopters or shared shuttle flights in Bicester before they are flown down to Silverstone
Fresh Air, who also take VIPs to Royal Ascot, describe the private helicopter to Silverstone as the ‘ultimate way to arrive at the event’. A member of staff confirmed to MailOnline that the helicopters spotted were taking passengers to Silverstone.
Upon arriving at the the world-famous race circuit’s Grand Prix Heliport terminal, a complimentary champagne bar awaits passengers. From that point, guests are then driven to their hospitality location in a fleet of Porsche cars.
Those who have paid for the £1,200 Helicopter Shuttle experience are entitled to a return flight – which is 15 minutes each way – as well as a complimentary bar.
Silverstone, like every other Grand Prix, is famed for attracting the biggest celebrities around.
Ahead of today’s race, which comes after yesterday’s rain-affected qualifying, the likes of British singer Sam Ryder and Manchester United defender Raphael Varane were seen walking around the circuit.
Rapper Tinie Tempah, singer Tom Grennan and actor Damian Lewis – who sang Britain’s national anthem before hand – were also in attendance.
Hollywood star Brad Pitt was spotted wearing a racing suit as he has been filmed driving over the weekend for an F1-inspired movie. Mercedes driver Hamilton is helping to produce the film called ‘Apex’.
Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay, his daughter Holly and her new boyfriend Adam Peaty took a chopper down to Silverstone but from London.
Fresh Air, who also take VIPs to Royal Ascot, describe the private helicopter to Silverstone as the ‘ultimate way to arrive at the event’
British celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay walks through the grid before the British Formula One Grand Prix race at the Silverstone racetrack
British rapper Tinie Tempah (left) and Manchester United defender Raphael Varane (right) at Silverstone
With the threat of protests this afternoon, Northamptonshire Police will be using live facial recognition amid a raft of measures to heighten security.
Just Stop Oil has vowed to ‘continue disrupting sports and cultural events’ until the Government takes ‘meaningful’ action to stop further fossil fuel exploration in the UK.
Wimbledon, the second Ashes Test at Lord’s, the Premiership rugby final at Twickenham and the World Snooker Championship have already been targeted by the group’s demonstrators.
JSO activists stormed the Wellington Straight – the fastest point of the Northamptonshire track – during last year’s race, before sitting down during the opening lap of the race.
Silverstone has worked alongside Northamptonshire Police to beef up security ahead of today’s Formula One race.
Specialist teams, including armed officers, search teams, disruption officers and Automatic Number Plate Recognition units, are in place alongside Live Facial Recognition which works by scanning faces with a camera to match biometrics against those held on a watchlist.
Police said the watchlist includes suspects who are wanted for offences or have an outstanding warrant for an arrest issued by the courts, those who pose a risk of harm to themselves or others and vulnerable missing people.
US actor Brad Pitt, starring as an driver in an F1-inspired movie, is seen prior to the Formula One British Grand Prix at the Silverstone motor racing circuit
Singers Tom Grennan (left) and Sam Ryder (right) were both at Silverstone for the British GP
British model and actress Cara Delevingne during the British Grand Prix this afternoon
JSO has hinted that the Grand Prix may be its next target after having yesterday tweeted a video showing protesters on the track during last year’s race.
Speaking earlier this month, Silverstone managing director Stuart Pringle said: ‘The fundamental difference here is that you are not putting your life in danger when you run on the pitch at Lord’s.
‘You are not putting your life in danger when you sit on a snooker table or protest at a flower show.
‘A motor racing track is not the place to go. It is extraordinarily dangerous and people will be putting lives at risk if they go there, and any sensible, right-thinking person can extrapolate what the ultimate risk here is.’
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