Donald Trump arrives in Florida ahead of Miami Grand Prix

Former United States President Donald Trump has arrived at Miami’s Hard Rock Stadium for Sunday’s Formula One race.

The security surrounding the 57-lap event in Florida was significantly increased following Trump’s decision to attend the sixth round of the 2024 campaign.

The 77-year-old, currently on trial in New York for falsifying documents to cover up hush money payment, headed to the McLaren garage to meet the British team’s CEO Zak Brown, F1 boss Stefano Domenicali and FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem.

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Donald Trump was shown around the McLaren car by Zak Brown (PA)

Trump was shown around the McLaren car by Brown, and was later escorted to billionaire friend Steven Witkoff’s suite at the home of NFL’s Miami Dolphins after 10 minutes inside the British team’s garage.

A spokesperson for McLaren said: “McLaren is a non-political organisation, however we recognise and respect the office of President of the United States so when the request was made to visit our garage on race day we accepted alongside the president of the FIA and the CEO’s of Liberty Media and Formula One.

“We were honoured that McLaren Racing was chosen as the representative of F1 which gave us the opportunity to showcase the world class engineering that we bring to motorsport.”

Miami F1 GP Auto Racing
Donald Trump, centre, arrives at the McLaren garage (Rebecca Blackwell/AP)

Trump, carrying his customary red cap, appeared on the big screen as he then made his way to the grid in the moments before the race to huge cheers from the main grandstand.

He clenched his fist and mouthed “thank you” to the crowd before taking his position alongside the drivers for the United States national anthem.

Prospective Republican candidate Trump had reportedly planned to use a suite in the exclusive paddock club here to host a political fundraiser.

But speaking prior to Sunday’s race, Tom Garfinkel, CEO of the Miami Dolphins and Hard Rock Stadium, said: “There will not be any fundraising at the event from anybody.

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Taylor Swift was also believed to be among the guests (PA)

“The event is about bringing people together and we welcome everybody. We don’t control people’s guest lists when they buy a suite.

“We want everyone to enjoy the race, and we want this to be a great environment and not something that becomes political or is used for commercial or political purposes.”

Pop star Taylor Swift was rumoured to be among the plethora of stars in attendance in Miami with her boyfriend, Kansas City Chiefs’ Superbowl winner Travis Kelce, also on the F1 guest list.

Retired NFL star Tom Brady, World Cup winner Zinedine Zidane, four-time Major winner Rory McIlroy, Los Angeles Lakers’ giant Lebron James and singer Shakira were also due to attend.

Max Verstappen, who has won four of the five rounds so far, starts on pole position, with Lewis Hamilton eighth on the grid.