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Pit lane experience by Jonathan Neo/ Team NILA news

Up close and personal with the F1 pit lane

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What an unexpected and wonderful treat! 

Thanks to Sport Singapore and Singapore GP, my best friend Jonathan and I got an opportunity to walk the F1 Pit Lane and get up close to the super cars! With "everything fun" in mind, we were set to explore the motor race phenomenon, and how the organiser, Singapore GP, engaged young people and children.

Pit lane experience by Philip Au/ Team NILA
A crowd forming at the entrance before the start of the event. Photo: Philip Au/ Team NILA

We arrived an hour before the official open time and the entrance was already packed with hundreds of people! The officials told us that as of 15 Sep, 43,000 people had already visited their roadshow. 

After entering via Gate 1, we spent some time exploring the F1 Village. Near the entrance, we found a few large merchandising tents selling official items. Venturing further in, we came across the Village Stage where live musical performances, and a rather large F&B area with various famous vendors, all serving up a variety of cocktails, beer, meals and finger food.

Pit lane experience by Philip Au/ Team NILA
Children having fun at the photo booth waiting area. Photo: Philip Au/ Team NILA

While we were seated on some triangular funny-looking cushions, our attention were caught by a few young kids. 5-year-old Boon Seng, his sister Xi Ying and some other kids had treated the photo booth waiting area as their private playground.

Pit lane experience by Philip Au/ Team NILA

Jonathan getting a complimentary airbrush tattoo. Photo: Philip Au/ Team NILA

Oh and there was a tent where people got airbrush tattoos for free! Visitors didn't mind the long queue and Jonathan joined them for kicks too. 

We tried to have our pictures taken on the “podium" but it was just too crowded.

At around 9:30pm, we started to head onto the track! Did you know that the Marina Bay Street Circuit pit lane (404m) is one of the longest in the season. The first thing that struck me when we entered the circuit was how BRIGHT it was. Coming from the dimly-lit night it was quite blinding. We followed the crowd on a walk through a section of the track, past Turn 1 and into the Pit Lane. I wasn’t sure what we were going to see there — I had hoped for some cars at least!

Pit lane experience by Jonathan Neo/ Team NILA

Renault pit crew during their tyre-change drill. Photo: Jonathan Neo/ Team NILA

The Renault and Red Bull Racing pit crew were getting ready for their tyre-change drill. Also, Sebastian Vettel was in the Ferrari garage with the crew hard at work.

Indeed, everyone was filled with excitement as they entered the F1 Pit Lane Experience which offers a glimpse of what goes on behind-the-scenes to set up the Formula One night race. Along the pit lane, we were in awe of the pit crews changing types with efficiency and speed. Standing closely to them gave us a truly unique and privileged F1 experience. 

Do you think you have what it takes to be an F1 driver? Watch this video to find out. 

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