25 April 2010

Shanghai GP 2010

By Rudy

Shang-Hi! I just got back and I’ve gotta say Shanghai was quite an experience especially for a non-chinese speaking Chinese. i.e. ME.

We arrived Shanghai on Thursday night and travelled to Anting Villa Hotel by road – took us about 2 1/2 hours from Hangzhou which was only really that long because of road blocks conducted due to the upcoming 2010 World Expo.

We arrived at the track early on Friday to absorb the full F1 experience, checking out merchandise and cars on show.


Our winners Derrick and Benjamin with their partners

Soon enough, a representative from the AT&T Williams team brought us into the paddock area with 15 minutes left of the 2nd free practice. We watched the remaining of the practice in the AT&T Williams Motor Home. Basically these little set ups that all the teams have at each race that provides food, drinks, a place to hang basically for guests or have discussions.


Derrick and his wife having some coffee in the AT&T Williams motor home while waiting for the free practice to end

After some refreshments, we were brought to the garage for a tour with the AT&T Williams representative showing us how data is captured from the car and how it’s analyzed, the Cosworth engines that the car runs on this season, the tyre warmers and of course the rear wing that carries the AirAsia logo! We also managed to catch the mechanics taking the cars apart which was very interesting. It takes average 3 hours to put an F1 car together – imagine that.



Our winners at the pit. (The other guy in the picture is Vilon – our social media dude who travelled to China with me and was basically my voice since I couldn’t speak Chinese. Wouldn’t have survived without his help!)

All in all, our winners enjoyed the amazinge experience of visiting an F1 team pit. We spent Saturday exploring Shanghai. Places to check out while in Shanghai:

1) Xin Tian Di (night life area)
2) The Bund (great view of the river and Shanghai Tower, I suggest going at night)
3) Tian Zi Fang (really cool artsy-fartsy area)

Race day was pretty much wet-out but an interesting race nonetheless. The team finished 12th and 15th, so no points from this race but let’s hope they’ll bounce back with a good break before Barcelona.

Our view from the grandstand

So if you want to experience a GP from the pits to the stands with some sightseeing time thrown in, take part in the AirAsia GP Challenge now! The contest is open for the Silverstone race happening this July in UK. You wouldn’t want to miss out on a race that’s taking place at the home of motor sports would you?

Even if you’re not an F1 fan, trust me, the experience is unlike any other. I was never an F1 fan but I follow the sport now. Do the math.

- Cool dude -