Posts Tagged ‘Monaco

25
Aug
09

Monaco of the East

I asked a group of F1 enthusiasts, which would be their dream destination to watch F1 live. Some lazy bones said I’d only go when India opens its own circuit. Most said Monaco and others said Singapore.

When questioned further the reasons cited brought about some interesting comparisons and contrasts. Monaco: one of the oldest circuits in the season, was inaugurated in 1929. Racing on its narrow streets is rather mockingly likened to riding a bicycle around your bathroom or like Nelson Piquet jested, “like flying a helicopter in the living room!”

For us spectators, the more challenging the circuit the greater the thrill. World Champion Lewis Hamilton was reported to have said that it [Singapore] was twice as hard to negotiate as the more famous Monaco street circuit, and unexpectedly physical – requiring double the amount of energy over a single lap as compared to the Monaco circuit. This was because the roads are rather bumpy and the turns tough to negotiate at such high speeds.

 

Reigning Champion Lewis Hamilton

Reigning Champion Lewis Hamilton

The streets of Monaco have always pushed the skills of the drivers to the maximum and now Singapore even more so! Another interesting comparison is with the tunnel in Monaco – a bone of contention, owing to the abrupt shift from light to dark and into light again. Singapore’s circuit gives the same feel – almost – when it ducks under the Bay Grandstand between turn 18 and 19.

While Singapore can’t compare when it comes to Monaco’s history, the newness of its circuit is a definite plus for viewing pleasure. Plus, Singapore’s proximity to India has a definite advantage – yes this is the cold-blooded practical angle. However, it really isn’t all that cold-blooded. The race action is over-heated with all the stress and tentions of the track. AND AND AND… you can’t call any place where Beyonce and Fergie are playing to the crowd cold-blooded now can you! *wink*

Last year was special coz it’s the first year, this year is special-ER because there is so so much more!

So how do we go about getting there? Don’t fret, there are a set of travel packages that have been designed to be completely hassle-free, easy to book and really good deals as well!

Check out the packages put together by Travel Tours on this really helpful website. So for those who don’t want to leave the comfort of their couch until a circuit comes to India. Don’t wait around, coz the last one there is as good as…Badoer! Yup, you heard me!

Monaco's Street Circuit

Monaco's Street Circuit

 

Singapore's night street race circuit

Singapore's night street race circuit

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

Kick Every Racers asS

Jenson Button has proved that having the best car is the ticket to success. How much does the driver really matter?

Well if the driver doesn’t matter then why are World Champions paid so much? Why are they coveted and sought after? Get a decent driver and a fast car and that should do right? The race stats this year seems to tilt the argument in the favour of the constructor!

Hamilton said that the KERS power boost system helped beat Raikkonen and Webber at Hungary. He admitted that with KERS “anything can happen”.

Ferrari and McLaren have been constantly pursuing KERS and Costa, Ferrari’s technical director admits that it has helped improve lap timings. Ferrari’s improved performance at Monaco’s street circuit definitely brings their hopes with Valencia around the corner as well as the much talked about night race at Singapore.

Singapore has much to offer this season. Not only is it the thrill of the circuit, Alonso’s win last year and its many mishaps has a lot of ardent fans, me included looking forward to what it could bring this year.

Will KERS change the course of fate? Will the streets expanded circuits, enhanced for over-taking bring about an optimum use of KERS. I guess we will only have to wait with bated breath!

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.