Six men smashed through the front entrance of the Milton Keynes factory for Infiniti Red Bull Racing and stole more than 60 trophies from a big display case there. The men drove an unidentified, silver 4×4 vehicle through the front glass doors of the building at about 1:30 am GMT.
Team principal Christian Horner said they were “devastated” by the break-in as the trophies “took years and hard work to accumulate”.
The BBC reports that the “aggressive” break-in is made more confusing due to the nature of the heist. The Infiniti Red Bull Racing trophies have no real market value, especially when known to be stolen goods, and are more sentimental than anything else. Racing trophies like these are rarely made from precious materials and are made to be earned and coveted, not melted down for scrap value. Horner said that many of the trophies stolen were actually replicas, as originals for them are at other Red Bull team facilities.
What’s more, some of the more valuable trophies were not in the Infiniti Red Bull Racing factory at all, having been passed on to new winners. The F1 Championship trophy, for example, is passed from winner to winner and was won this year by Lewis Hamilton on the Mercedes-Benz driving team.
Police do have clues to go on to find the criminals, says ESPN. Two vehicles were involved in the heist, including the aforementioned silver 4×4 and a dark blue or black Mercedes estate car. Both had foreign plates, police report.
“The offenders took items that not only did not belong to them, but which represented the efforts of a group of dedicated, hard-working individuals.”
Police have issued no descriptions of the men thus far, though they have confirmed that all of the suspects were likely men and all were wearing dark clothing during the break-in. No staff were harmed during the break-in, IBM Live reports, and the Red Bull Racing theft may be an international investigation now, given the license plates of the suspect vehicles.
CNN reports that the Red Bull management team will likely review access protocols to the factory and lament that it may be mean less public access for tours and showings. The Infiniti Red Bull Racing factory has enjoyed a reputation as being one of the most open in the Formula One world.