Sunday, November 04, 2012

Indian Grand Prix - An Eye-witness Account

On the last weekend of October 2012, a long cherished dream of mine finally got fulfilled! I was able witness live an F1 grand prix right from the trackside & not through a television. It was a revelation indeed, as witnessing a grand prix right in front of your eyes is very very different from watching it on television. The second edition of the Indian Grand Prix finally afforded me a chance to be there & hear that - an ear-numbing experience!

I first arrived on Saturday morning to soak up the atmosphere & to get a feel of the stands & the view. It was a good experience with a sparse crowd cheering up the practice session & the qualifying session. I arrived all dressed up as a Williams-F1 fan, though nowadays I don't follow any of their drivers. I used to be a Williams fan during Montoya days. The guy on the seat next to mine had come all the way from Mumbai to watch the event & I had a nice time in his company. We ate & drank together & had a nice time that day watching real F1 cars & F1 stars in front of our eyes. A good precursor to the race day which was to follow the next day.

Me after the qualifying session
My new found friend in the stands & I had decided to come on the race day much before the scheduled race time so that we could watch the drivers' parade too. Arrived in time I did...all dressed up in a black F1 t-shirt & a scarlet Kimi Raikkonen cap & watched some of the support races together with my friend, but misfortune struck me unknowingly. After the last of the support races had finished & there was about an hour to go for the driver' parade, I thought of just having a look at rest of the circuit through one of the organizer's circulating buses. I was told that the bus returns to the starting point in about half an hour, & I merrily hopped in hoping to return to my seat in time for drivers' parade. But it was not to be...the bus was so slow that it took more than an hour to return, & by the time I could get back to my seat, the float carrying the star drivers around the circuit had already crossed the stand where I had my ticket. I really cursed myself & my fate so much after that, I could not focus on the happenings around me. In no time, the warm-up lap of the race had started & I got back to my senses again after seeing the drivers & cars whiz past me. The adrenalin was building up for the first lap of the race as all of us were hoping for some great wheel-to-wheel action at Turn-3, which was right in front of us. But Sebastian Vettel led the pack from the first lap down to the last without ever ceding the lead. There was some good action behind him for us to enjoy, though! The duel between Webber & Alonso for P2 & the perennial hot-pursuit by Kimi on Massa was quite absorbing. Schumi fans were in for some disappointment as he got a puncture in the first lap itself, though that allowed us to view him for better length of time while passing in front of us. All in all, the race went off much as per expectation, as Vettel & Red Bull were victorious once again.

It was great fun cheering for Kimi every time he went past us biting on the tails of Massa's car. He once overtook Massa at Turn-3 just in front of us, but Massa again went past him on the long straight after that. We also egged on Narain Karthikeyan to keep pushing every time he passed by.

Me after the race
Overall it was a fun experience, & something that I will remember for a long, long time. The ear-shattering sound of the F1 cars & the amazing speed is to be seen to be believed. And perhaps the one sour experience of narrowly missing the drivers' parade be the excuse for me to buy a ticket once again to watch the race "live" next year too!

1 comment:

sathish said...

get ready the 2013 is getting closer..dont forget to come to the race ;)