Aintree Horse Racing
Police confiscate three drones during Aintree race; brawl leads to eight arrests

Police confiscate three drones during Aintree race; brawl leads to eight arrests

The track has restricted airspace during its three-day meeting to combat the use of drones, which have appeared more regularly on British racecourses due to their ability to relay pictures quicker than those provided by broadcasters, giving some in-running punters an advantage. Merseyside Police became aware of drones being used on Thursday as well as Friday, and in response the operators were found and their equipment seized.

Chief Inspector Iain Wyke, running the police’s event management, said: “This incident demonstrated the excellent detection work by officers who were able to swiftly identify the operators and seize the equipment.” Airspace restrictions will remain in place for the duration of the event, and if we suspect a drone is being flown in the restricted area we will take action.

“If you commit an offence and fly a drone within the restricted area without permission your equipment may be seized, and you may render yourself liable to prosecution.”

Pictures emerged on social media of a fight during racing at Aintree on Friday, and police confirmed four men were arrested on suspicion of affray and two for assault. A racegoer was arrested on suspicion of a drug offence having been searched at the main entrance, while another was arrested for being drunk and disorderly.

Wyke said: “Ladies’ day welcomed thousands more visitors to the festival and I’d like to thank everyone for enjoying the day safely. There were very little incidents to note as the vast majority of racegoers enjoyed it without causing any disruption.”

A crowd of 44,687 attended Aintree on Friday, a drop just short of 3,000 on last year. Close to 60,000 attended Grand National day last season.

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