7 Animals that became Visitors in F1

F1 has became a mini zoo with small creatures and critters appearing out of nowhere on the track at any time. Here are a few animals we’ve seen on the circus since 2000.

Deers

During the 2001 Austrian Grand Prix a deer was spotted crossing a gravel trap on the circuit, prompting Juan Pablo Montoya to exclaim “Oh deer!”

Groundhogs

7 Animals that became Visitors in F1 - Formula 1

The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is home to many sorts of wildlife appearing on the track. The most famous animals to appear are groundhogs, which one of them is shown above during the 2015 Canadian Grand Prix. During the 2007 race a groundhog infamously costed a driver’s chance for a podium finish. Super Aguri’s Anthony Davidson was running in third when he hit the poor critter, damaging his front wing. To make matters worse, the pit crew were too busy watching the race on action that they were unaware Davidson came in for a pit stop, wiping away his chances of a podium finish. His team-mate, Takuma Sato, however, finished sixth and gave the team’s second and final points scoring for the team after famously passing Fernando Alonso.

Foxes

7 Animals that became Visitors in F1 - Formula 1

This fox appeared on the circuit at Turn 4 during free practice for the 2012 Canadian Grand Prix at Turn 4. It was only afterwards that Kimi Raikkonen later spotted a squirrel at Turn 8.

Birds

7 Animals that became Visitors in F1 - Formula 1

It is also common for birds to pick up grubs on the circuit. During the 2016 Canadian Grand Prix Sebastian Vettel encountered two seagulls during the race (picture above). A bird was sadly killed when it hit the airbox of Jenson Button’s Williams during testing in 2000.

Footage of a number of mynahs were also seen on the track when the 2009 Malaysian Grand Prix was red-flagged (unfortunately I can’t find the pics online).

Rabbits

7 Animals that became Visitors in F1 - Formula 1

This rabbit was found hopping on the track during free practice for the 2009 Chinese Grand Prix.

Dogs

7 Animals that became Visitors in F1 - Formula 1

A black stray dog was found roaming near the pit entrance of the Buddh Circuit during free practice for the inaugural 2011 Indian Grand Prix, and nearly collided with Adrian Sutil. Marshals eventually chased the dog away (video below) when the session was stopped.

A dog also infamously caused Bruno Senna to retire during the 2008 GP2 race in Turkey.

Lizards

7 Animals that became Visitors in F1 - Formula 1

This would probably be the most recent animal spotted on F1 tracks. A huge monitor lizard was seen by Max Verstappen near Turn 3 during Saturday Practice for the 2016 Singapore Grand Prix, which made him report to the team radio, in which his engineer joked “Face to face with Godzilla”. Whether the reptile was captured is anyone’s guesses.

What’s the most memorable animal appearance in F1 can you recall?

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