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Sunday, 10 July 2011

F1; It's Not The Pits

I've never been a fan of F1, I couldn't see what was so exciting about watching a load of cars driven round and round a track, that was until I was inadvertently sucked into watching this year's Monaco Grand Prix coverage on the BBC and since then I have been hooked, well imagine my surprise when Mr Right called from work to say that he had won tickets for the F1 Qualifiers at Silverstone!


The company he works for are one of the sponsors and very generously run competitions for staff members to win VIP tickets every year.  Every year Mr Right has entered but never won, how apt that he should win this year, what with my burgeoning interest in the sport and the newly revamped track and facilities at Silverstone it really couldn't have come at a better time.


I ventured out for some essentials last week, rain ponchos, ear defenders and picnic supplies and we were all set.
We arrived in time for the free practice session and took our seats in the Abbey Stand which I was super excited about as it was directly opposite the pits, great for watching the beautiful people and for a general overview of the proceedings as the Start/Finish Line is also located there, thankfully I thought to bring our binoculars too, so we were able to watch pit stops and the TV crews and presenters doing their thing in the pit lane.
Our view of the Start/Finish Line
The first thing that hit me was the noise, TV just doesn't do it justice.  Earsplitting is the only word for it, not only the cars themselves but the equipment they use in the team garages.  It's a noise that you can feel throughout your core.  I was so glad that I had bought the (pink!) ear defenders,
Me in my ear defenders with my VIP pass and FanVision
although our hosts had kindly provided ear plugs in a stylish metal vial we wouldn't have been able to use the headphones that came with our complementary FanVision hand-held TV device through which we were not only able to visually follow the overall proceedings but also listen to the BBC commentary too, a must if I was to understand anything that was happening.
I tried to take some photos of the cars during Q1, 2 and 3 but invariably ended up with either a car-shaped blur or a not so interesting picture of the track so I decided to take a video too just to try and capture the noise and speed
Another thing I wasn't expecting was to be able to smell the fuel, it was a tad overpowering by the end of the day, although didn't mar my overall enjoyment.  Likewise the stories of traffic problems getting into and out of the site from previous attendees seemed to have been sorted with a great park and ride scheme and slick organisation on the part of the Silverstone staff. 


Jenson Button made a brief appearance (the only driver to do so) before qualification which was a nice touch and there was more to the day than just the hour or so of F1, there was Porsche and BMW qualification and a proper race, as well as some live music and an after party (although Mr Right and I weren't able to hang around as we had small people to collect from knackered grandparents), it had a real festival feel about it with die-hard petrol heads camping out for the entire weekend, all in all it was a great day out and I for one will be keeping my fingers crossed that Mr Right is lucky enough to win tickets next year.
Eventual 2011 British Grand Prix winner Fernando Alonso

1 comment:

  1. oooh, this makes a pleasant change from crochet!
    you look like so giddy!
    fee x

    ReplyDelete

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