The 16-year-old ADAC Formula 4 driver has been fined €5,000 for uploading the video without permission
The shocking video of ADAC F4 driver Sophia Floersch narrowly missing a course car during a practice session at the Oschersleben circuit has been doing the rounds on social media and across the web for the last 24 hours or so.
Unsurprisingly pretty much everyone wondered how on earth a course vehicle was allowed to cross the circuit when cars were still on the track. Series organisers ADAC have therefore issued a hefty fine…to Sophia Floersch. Wait, what?
The thing is, Floersch was nabbed for uploading the video of the incident without permission. The ruling itself says:
It is forbidden to publish any footage taken during an event, unless specifically approved by the ADAC. The stewards shall punish any infringement with fines of at least €20,000.
That seems fairly cut and dry, and although Floersch herself initially tweeted she’d been hit with the full €20,000 fine, the ADAC later confirmed that the fine was ‘only’ for €5,000.
That’s still a lot for a young driver in a junior series however, and you have to wonder if the same punishment would have been handed out if it hadn’t been a video of such a dangerous situation. After all, it doesn’t exactly paint the series in the best light.
Floersch is also under investigation for failing to slow down for the red flags which were out at the time (although not easily visible on the admittedly low-quality video).
Whilst Floersch claimed on Twitter that she slowed down as a result it doesn’t appear to have been by the amount you might expect for a red flag, and there’s a chance she might get pinged for that as well. That said, the other car that goes past at the end of the video wasn’t exactly going slowly either…
Regardless of the errors that may or may not have been committed on Floersch’s part (the full details of the circumstances surrounding the incident are still a little unclear), it’s staggering to think something like this can happen at all in this day and age - especially given some of the tragic incidents of recent years.
Perhaps instead of focusing on issuing trivial fines for breaches of media protocol, the series needs to have a look at ensuring that something like this can never be allowed to happen again, because it could have been so, so much worse.