Posts Tagged ‘cars

30
Oct
09

what do they think?

Here’s what some of the racers had to say about the latest track addition of the season.
Jenson Button

Jenson Button

“It’s always fun to try a new race track, particularly one which looks as unique as Yas Marina with the unusual pit-lane exit and the day/night race.” Jenson Button, Brawn GP

Rubens Barichello

Rubens Barichello

“The layout of the circuit seems both fun and challenging and it will be interesting to start the race in daylight and to finish in evening conditions.” Rubens Barrichello, Brawn GP 

Fernando Alonso

Fernando Alonso

 “It will be a new experience for everyone so it’s important that we maximise all the sessions and learn as much as we can quickly to try and find an advantage. I think the facility looks amazing…” Fernando Alonso, Renault   

Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton

 “All the signs point to Abu Dhabi being another strong track for us – there are plenty of slow corners leading onto long straights, where KERS will be very advantageous. Seeing as it’s likely to be the last race for KERS, it would be fantastic to send it off with a perfect result.” Lewis Hamilton, McLaren

 

28
Aug
09

Close enough to touch – almost!

F1 Singapore

F1 Singapore

I played some psychology games with myself (I do that sometimes, just to check my sanity levels). This time I played free-association. You know, you think of a word and immediately associative things pop-up. So this time I thought of F1 Singapore – predictable night race, street race, hose pipe (thanks to Massa) and also so close!

Now, when I thought about it I realised, close not just in terms of close to India (that too, but not only) the cars are so amazingly close to where you stand. It is logical isn’t it? It’s on the regular street! A street that on a normal day, you stand waiting for the light to change so you can run across to grab a bite, or something. Honestly, the only thing keeping you from the cars is ice-cold fear and a flimsy wire-fence! The sound and the blast of air after a car whips past can literally bowl you over!

Alonso cycling

www.singaporegrandprix.in

25
Aug
09

The not so new recruits!

In my previous blog about the 3 new recruits of the season, I had signed off saying there was much action that we could expect considering a street circuit. But, it was just disappointment at its best with Valencia’s results.

Renault’s Romain Grosjean who replaced Piquet Jr. began with a damaged nose on the opening lap that called for an unscheduled stop. With a start like that, there definitely was pressure on the driver who ultimately ended on a half spin holding on to the 15th position. So is Renault regretting its decision? And is Alonso really getting that added attention after all?

Valencia’s street circuit proved costly for Toro Rosso’s Jaime Alguersuari as well. Alguersuari spun in Turn 12 on Lap 43 and never made it back on the track. Having put on a much better show at Hungary, this replacement for Sebastien Bourdais spelt disappointment as he clinched the 16th position.

The much talked about replacement, Luca Badoer was also probably the biggest disappointment on the streets of Valencia. Adding to his list of dubious records, has got to be that of the worst performance by a mid season recruit! Right from letting fellow recruit Romain Grosjean overtake him to getting a drive-through penalty, Badoer seems to have gone all out in doing everything wrong in his much debated return to Formula 1. With everything that went wrong, team Ferrari with Luca Badoer came in 17th!

Valencia’s street circuit brought out the worst in the recruits for Renault, Toro Rosso and Ferrari with each claiming the 15th, 16th and 17th positions respectively.

With such terrible performances on a street circuit like Valencia, I cannot help but imagine in utter sadistic amusement the turnout at a circuit like Singapore. Can you imagine . . . a night race, a street race and the worst mid season recruits ever!

www.singaporegrandprix.in

The Singapore Night Street Race

The Singapore Night Street Race

22
Aug
09

Host to another FIRST!

F1 Singapore 2008 saw a whole number of firsts. It was the FIRST Formula One race ever to be held in Singapore plus Singapore was home to Asia’s FIRST street race! Now come on that can’t be all, now can it? To add to its list of firsts, Singapore took it a couple of notches higher, or should I say a couple of VOLTAGES higher and F1 Singapore 2008 saw the FIRST night race in the history of Formula One racing.

So it is easy to say that whoever made it to last year’s Singapore Grand Prix sure was a part of history in the making! But wait, don’t lose heart if you weren’t there, 2009 has a whole new FIRST of its kind.

Having dominated the F1 frenzy with all its firsts in 2008, Singapore Grand Prix 2009 is going all out to dominate the entertainment quotient of this season! Another FIRST for the sport is Singapore’s line up of artists from around the world.

The world’s only night race is where every racing fan wants to be. And I guess it’s exactly where the who’s who of entertainment want to be too. Beyonce, The Black Eyed Peas, Travis, N*E*R*D, Simple Minds are just the tip of the iceberg. With 4 days packed with entertainment around the circuit, Singapore has gone that extra mile to give every ticket holder his entire money’s worth.

So there’s the world’s only night race, I’m sorry, make that the world’s only NIGHT STREET RACE, and this incredible line up of chart toppers and there’s the fact that Singapore is just 4.5 hours away, I don’t see why it’s not worth it.

Singapore_circuit_parties

Correct me if I’m wrong, but it just does not get bigger than this!

 

http://www.singaporegrandprix.in

21
Aug
09

The new recruits!

I don’t know about you, but it seems to me that drivers are not top priority for teams anymore. The 2009 championships have seen quite a few mid season changes that have left teams and fans suspended in anticipation and anxiety.

To add to the drama, every change is accompanied with intense media hype and gossip! The star of the show has got to be Nelson Piquet Jr. on his dismissal from Renault. In his exact words, “Flavio Briatore was my ‘EXECUTIONER’ more than my manager”. The son of legendary Formula One Champion, Nelson Piquet blamed the team for his poor performances and accused them of giving teammate Alonso all the attention. Oooooo! Hard claims!

Next was Sebastien Bourdais. This racer began his F1 stint with Toro Rosso in 2008 and after a fairly good season in 2008, Bourdais began a steady decline in the 2009 Formula One Championships. Get this, in Spain he struck teammate Buemi’s car in an attempt of avoiding Jarno Trulli, ending the race for both drivers! And then, at the British Grand Prix, there was an encore when Bourdais collided with McLaren driver Kovalainen ending the race,again, for both drivers. With a hit-list like that it was evident he wasn’t going to last long resulting in Toro Rosso’s decision to replace Bourdais with Jaime Alguersuari. Now, that’s some bad street cred!

Well the drama didn’t end there, Bourdais threatened to sue. And that’s when Toro Rosso dished out a reported whopping 2.1 million US dollars for an out of court settlement! Unbelievable!

The next replacement, and the most talked about is Luca Badoer for Ferrari. With all the excitement of Schumacher’s return and then him NOT returning, Luca Badoer has definitely been the centre of F1 attention. Although a relatively new name to me, Badoer holds the dubious distinction of being a driver who has competed in 48 Grand Prix’s without scoring a single point! Other records to his name include the record of having driven the most kilometers in a Ferrari Formula One car than any other Italian in history!

For champions and underdogs, all I can say is – with challenging circuits like the Singapore street circuit still to come, it sure is going to be one hell of a season to watch the REPLACEMENTS give it their best!

www.singaporegrandprix.in

21
Aug
09

F1 on the streets!

With an F1 race round the corner can you even begin to imagine all the preparations that go into the logistics of a race circuit? Just imagine all the racers, their cars, the who’s who of social circuits and a circuit packed with racing fans. Alright, now that you have that in place . . . take that whole concept and move it to a street. A street in your city! Unbelievable and impossible? I guess not for the FIA. With Monaco introducing the streets as its circuits, Formula 1 was all set to flag off a whole new adventure. Now having to manoeuvre actual streets on a track that was never meant to race on, audiences have so much more to experience with drivers being pushed to their racing bests. All the mayhem and madness that comes along with the concept of a street race, there has been a definite addition to the entertainment quotient of the sport.

Say ‘streets’ and all I can think of are an endless number of bumps with never-ending traffic and a lot of time just wasted in jams. As for the fastest and meanest machines on wheels, I think NO WAY! But clearly for the FIA ‘Impossible is nothing’! With the first street race being flagged off at Monaco, Valencia and Singapore soon made their debuts in the F1 2008 Championships.

As for Valencia, in spite of it being its debut, the street race sort of fell flat. Even though all the logistics of the race were carefully planned and executed, the race ended with an unsatisfied audience. Reason being – the ‘Safety Car’ had a no show. A street race and mishaps on the circuit come hand in hand. But with a completely safe and risk-free race, (if ever such a thing exists) Valencia did not get that unbelievable break! I mean what is Formula One racing without one of those spectacular crashes, that fall in place so perfectly, at all the right times to make all the difference? No crashes, no mishaps and it just isn’t Formula One! 

The Singapore Grand Prix on the other hand, had everything going its way. Not only was it a street race, it was the FIRST ever NIGHT RACE in the history of Formula One. Singapore totally gave its audiences an F1 experience that was literally through the roof and was soon in a league of its own. Racing under the stars, a city’s streets becoming the circuit and of course the SAFETY CAR coming on TWICE was the perfect formula to propel F1 Singapore as the highlight of the 2008 championships!

I guess it is pretty much evident now that the FIA really will go ahead with any idea to take this already pulsating sport to any new level for it to stay a cut above the rest!

So if you were to introduce this whole new rule or this whole new concept to Formula One racing, what would it be?

www.singaporegrandprix.in

21
Aug
09

How Bizarre!

F1 as a sport has more than its share of freak accidents. Some comical, some dangerous, some exciting and some downright fateful!

Here are some that always tug at my G-Force!

The world’s first night race last year at Singapore had racing fans’ jaws drop open. Massa’s racing away with the fuel hose still in his car has got to win hands down on the top of charts of ignominious moments!

One that really had me surprised was Webber’s gear shift going phut. Why? Because there was some interference with the underground train line and he had to drop out of the race! Let us just go back to the day of the Morse, so we can finish our races for God’s sake!

Alonso’s win – a stroke of luck, or was it underhanded strategy? Eyebrows are still raised at the idea of him pitting on the 12th lap and having his team mate crash a couple of laps down! The safety car ruined the race for all the other hot favourites.

Some that weren’t so recent but still do the rounds at the F1 tables is when Robert Kubica – broke his hand in a road accident and raced with one hand. He changed gears only with the right and drove with his left!

Talk about bizarre excuses and you have got to remember David Coulthard at the 1995 Australian Grand Prix. In a comfortable lead, all that was needed was a routine tyre change. Instead he drove right into the pit wall. What takes the cake was Coulthard’s excuse of the engine over revving by itself!

The year was 1977, it was Hans Heyer’s first and only attempt at the German Grand Prix. With little experience with single seaters, and a bad car he did not qualify. But get this, he still raced! Heyer snuck in from the pit lane and lasted a whole 10 laps until his gearbox broke down!

These were a couple that got my attention. If you have a list of your own, go ahead and add on!

www.singaporegrandprix.in




Speed Tweets

F1 all the way!

Singapore 2008 highlights

An exciting video of Singapore Grand Prix 2008 - a just prelude to 2009. Don't miss it!

Singapore F1 Grand Prix 2008 from Matt Preston on Vimeo.