Skip to main content

Real Madrid striker Benzema clocked at high speed, could lose driver's license

By Al Goodman, CNN
updated 8:48 AM EST, Thu February 28, 2013
Karim Benzema signed for Real Madrid from French team Lyon in 2009.
Karim Benzema signed for Real Madrid from French team Lyon in 2009.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Police say Karim Benzema was clocked at 216 kph in a 100-kph zone on a Madrid highway
  • Authorities did not immediately pursue Benzema because of safety concerns, police say
  • They say they tracked him down using the vehicle's license plate
  • He could lose his license for at least a year, be jailed or fined, or face community service

Madrid (CNN) -- He's fast on the football field but apparently even faster behind the wheel.

Real Madrid star striker Karim Benzema was clocked driving 216 kilometers per hour (about 134 mph) -- more than double the speed limit -- before dawn on February 3 on a Madrid highway, and he could lose his license for at least a year, a Traffic Directorate spokeswoman told CNN.

Civil Guard vehicles clocked and photographed the alleged speeding offense of Benzema in a 100 kph (62 mph) zone on the M40 ring road in western Madrid, said the spokeswoman, who by custom is not identified.

Benzema was driving an Audi. The company is an official sponsor of Real Madrid, and all players on the first team have an Audi at their disposal, a Real Madrid spokesman said.

The Civil Guard radar trap consisted of two sets of vehicles, one on the highway with a radar camera, which Benzema passed quickly, and a second down the road.

Authorities did not immediately pursue Benzema, because of darkness and safety concerns for other drivers. But they did get the license plate number and later tracked the vehicle to him, the traffic spokeswoman said.

The incident occurred hours after Real Madrid suffered an unexpected loss to Granada in a league match, on the evening of February 2.

Real Madrid would not comment on the incident other than to say that club policy lets the player directly handle a traffic violation.

Spanish media reported that Benzema, 25, a French international, made an initial appearance before an investigating magistrate Thursday.

The sanctions could include losing his driver's license for one to four years. In addition, he could receive up to six months in jail, a fine, or several weeks or months of community service, the traffic spokeswoman said.

Benzema did not play in Real Madrid's victory over archrivals FC Barcelona last Tuesday in the semifinals of Spain's Copa de Rey, or King's Cup, but the club spokesman said that was a decision of coach Jose Mourinho and was unrelated to the alleged traffic violation.

Some Spanish media reported that a second vehicle was speeding alongside Benzema's that night, but the traffic spokeswoman said Civil Guards are aware of only the vehicle that Benzema was driving.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
Track the buzz of the 2014 Formula One season, race by race, with all the latest social reaction from motorsport experts.
updated 12:14 PM EST, Fri November 7, 2014
Glitz... check, glamor... check. Teams going bust... er, check. F1 generates billion-dollar revenues, so why can't some of its teams stay afloat?
updated 1:14 PM EST, Fri November 7, 2014
With the sport currently facing up to a financial crisis, motorsport journalist Ed Foster explores the history of F1 sponsorship.
updated 5:58 AM EDT, Tue October 21, 2014
He's paid millions to drive one of the world's fastest cars, and he's one of F1's most colorful characters, but Kimi Raikkonen loves normality.
updated 1:45 PM EDT, Sun October 12, 2014
It took a little longer than expected but MotoGP's young star Marc Marquez wraps up his second world title in Japan.
updated 6:39 AM EDT, Thu October 9, 2014
Rising star Daniil Kvyat made history as the home hero at F1's first Russian Grand Prix, ahead of next season's move to Red Bull.
updated 9:58 AM EDT, Fri September 19, 2014
Take the fittest driver in Formula One and test him against two of the world's leading triathletes in a high-performance laboratory.
updated 12:04 PM EDT, Fri September 5, 2014
Mercedes has the fastest two cars in Formula One this season but there is just one problem -- there can only be one world champion.
He's the best of the rest -- Daniel Ricciardo has been Formula One's surprise package in the first half of the 2014 season.
updated 7:35 AM EDT, Thu July 24, 2014
Formula One is not likely to go hungry in Hungary as master chefs cater in volume for drivers, teams and VIP guests.
updated 10:43 AM EDT, Thu July 3, 2014
It's the elephant in the room of Formula One. What's the prognosis legendary driver Michael Schumacher?
updated 7:10 PM EDT, Fri May 23, 2014
It stimulates all five senses, creating an unparalleled experience for drivers and fans alike. Take a tour of Monaco with Mark Webber.
ADVERTISEMENT