India is preparing for its First F1 Grand Prix. And I was one of the fortunate few who got to experience the circuit, the adrenalin & and the thunder of an F1 Race-car on the track! A Sneak peak to what the race on 30th Oct has in store for all of us. Simon, Ian & Pete from the RBR Racing Team put up a superb show at the pits, while Rajiv Makhni interviewed the Engineers & geniuses behind the Show Car team. The highlight of the show was Neel Jani, driving an older modified F1 show car. Neel, a Swiss Driver of Indian origin, has also conquered the highest motorable road at Khardung-la with the same RBR Showcar.
The F1 ‘preview’ was not without all the security measures & checks – including a scrutiny lap, the safety car doing the rounds & the driver following the pit road speed limits. Neel surprised everyone after a few laps by burning some rubber at the chicane. Doing insane spins & sprints – to give the fans a spectacular experience of the Speed & Sound. Rajiv was joined by Vikram Chandra of NDTV for more on-track discussions. While the pit was buzzing with activity as the RBR F1 Car was getting dis-assembled. It was also great to bump into Ruhi Batra (Times of India) who – with her girly charms – got the special privilege to sit in the Safety Car. Special Thanks to the Red Bull Racing Team & Gaurav Wadhwa from Red Bull India – for such a great Experience.
A few pointers if you are planning to be at race:
- Carry the Correct Tickets. If you have the Seasons Pass (3-day access) you would have 3 different tickets for 3 different days. Make sure you check the date on the ticket.
- Leave early! If you are coming from New Delhi – chances are, it would take you 3hrs + to reach the venue & another 1hour to park and reach your designated stands.
- The F1 circuit is about 55kms from South Delhi via the Noida-Greater Noida Expressway.
- Parking though, is not a part of your package! (Sigh! Hidden costs) So make sure you buy your parking permit and avoid missing the race because of this silly little thing.
- Here’s a direct link to the circuit on the Map – Buddh International F1 Circuit.
- Not only does it take long to reach there, it takes even longer while coming back, as you have to use the busy service lane & merge with traffic coming from Greater Noida.
- No Cameras! This might sound strange, but the latest information that I have says – No DSLRs. Point and shoots are okay & so are iPhones.
- F1 rocks (Metallica Concert) tickets are not included in the F1 GP tickets – So if you are planning to be in Delhi – Don’t miss the Metallica concert in Gurgaon! Get your tickets here. The online sales are almost closing, so Hurry up!
- Best Deal for the F1 race is the Sunday Race pass – which is cheaper than a full 3-day access pass, but puts you right in the middle of action. Book your Race Day passes here at BookMyShow.com!
- Best Value tickets would be the Star Stand & the Classic East Stand. The Best possible place to be is at the Grand Stand – to view the start of the race, clear view of the pits & MAX speeds! This doesn’t really assure a long enough view, But since the Turn 16 is clearly visible from the Grand Stand, it would be super fun to see the F1 cars brake, and accelerate & vanish, and then finally brake again at Turn 1. With one of the longest straight line stretches, speeds would be touching 320-330 kmph here. Don’t forget your earplugs!
- Getting a ticket doesn’t assure you a good view. And not all stands would have seats or allotted places to sit. In the Natural & Picnic stands – as the name suggests – get your own sheets to sit & carry sunscreen!
With just three more races to go, the real race is between the Constructors. RBR Renault victorious with 558 points, McLaren Mercedes with 418 & Ferrari with 310. Force India is Number 6 with an impressive 49! While Vettel has already bagged Victory with 349 points. Button, Alonso, Webber & Hamilton are going to fight it out with 222, 212, 209 & 196 points respectively. 4 Drivers & 2 constructors fighting for the Number 2 spot is good enough for a lot of action!
Race Timing (IST):
Fri 28 October 2011 Practice 1 10:00 - 11:30 Practice 2 14:00 - 15:30 Sat 29 October 2011 Practice 3 11:00 - 12:00 Qualifying 14:00 Sun 30 October 2011 Race 15:00
Download a copy of a Free F1 Wallpaper here:
Right click on the desired resolution – and hit ‘Save Link As…’