New pictures: F1 fan risks jail taking first spy shots of Vietnam GP circuit

This just in from Reddit F1 this morning, some photo’s and video footage by a drone taken of the new Formula 1 Vietnam Grand Prix track.

A redditor (u/FL_Tandem) risked all this morning, taking his drone over to the construction site in Hanoi. Reputedly already warned off by officials, the brave F1 fan wasn’t going to leave without getting footage for us, so ducked back down a side alley and lauched their drone as high as possible to avoid detection.

“So the first time I flew my drone near the construction I got rushed by a bunch of workers yelling at me to take it down immediately and to not take any pics/videos and had people follow me so that’s why the videos aren’t very good.” says Tandem,

“But I was adamant on getting some shots and walked down a back alley and flew it really high so they couldn’t see the drone hence why there was no low shots,

“But they seen it and followed it back to me and couple police rushed me and told me if I didn’t leave or if they seen it again I was going to jail.”

And actually, jail time is a very likely punishment in that part of the world, even for a simple drone flight. Aparently in Thailand, to operate a drone you must first gain permission from the ministry of defense. Our budding reporter obviously hadn’t read that memo.

To illustrate the risks involved when working in far eastern countries, an Australian film-maker James Ricketson was sentenced to six years’ jail in Cambodia having been found guilty of espionage in Cambodia in 2017.

Ricketson, 69, said he had worked as a journalist and video documenter in the south-east Asian country since 1995 and was arrested in June 2017 for flying a drone at a political rally. He has been incarcerated since then, with the guilty verdict given this morning by a three-judge panel in the Cambodian capital Phnom Penh.

Hats off to Tandem. Maybe best avoid the area from now on though….

To view the images and movie footage, use the gallery below.