Advisor can't guarantee safety
One of Britain's former top cops currently advising the Bahraini government has admitted safety cannot be guaranteed at the Bahrain GP.
The message from John Yates, former assistant commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, comes on a day when one of Bahrain's leading activists, Nabbel Rajab, insisted no harm would come to anyone within Formula One.
Yates, currently on a six-month contract, said: "People say 'Can we guarantee security?' Of course we can't guarantee security.
"I'd be a fool to sit here and say that.
"Is it possible there might be an incursion on the track? Of course there is. It's an open event.
"Can you stop some idiot running onto the track? There have been other incidents of track incursions."
Such comments will likely dismay FIA president Jean Todt who is understood to have based his insistence the race would go ahead as planned partly on Yates' recommendations.
With protests being ramped up across Bahrain, with 15 in towns and villages on Wednesday night alone, security is expected to be tighter than at any other GP.
Speaking to The Guardian, Yates added: "There will be protests over the weekend. But we want to make this a sporting event not a security event.
"The man who is heading the security said he wanted security to be felt but not seen, and I applaud that.
"I judge it more likely there will be protests on the route and protests around the villages.
"I just hope it's a good event and I hope it goes off without too much trouble."
Sound bombs, rubber bullets and tear gas have been used by police to quell violent demonstrations in which petrol bombs are being used by protesters.
Yates, however, has not ruled out the possibility of using live ammunition should such an action be warranted.
"The police will have all the options you would expect," said Yates.
"If the opposition started firing live ammunition, the police would respond with live. But I don't think that's likely."