For one spectacular weekend every year for the 11th year now, Singapore’s cityscape transforms into a dazzling, adrenaline-charged motoring arena where the world’s best Formula One drivers gather for the annual Singapore Grand Prix.
As the world’s inaugural night race, the Singapore Grand Prix is undoubtedly the best-looking race, with iconic structures and the stunning Singapore skyline as a backdrop a highlight for locals and international visitors alike. Over 1,500 lighting projectors will line the famed Marina Bay Street Circuit as cars roar down the track, while an impressive line-up of international music acts and other performances draws tens of thousands of spectators each night.
Planning on being a part of the action? Here are five ways to help you get up to speed and enjoy the best experience of the Singapore Grand Prix:
Leave the driving to the experts
From out of town? Choose hotels along the Orchard Road shopping belt just steps away from the MRT station to make commuting a breeze.
For locals, the Fl weekend presents an opportunity for a staycation in the city with friends and family, to stay close to the action. Spend the day shopping before catching the race in the evening, and your feet will thank you for the short break you take as you drop your shopping haul at the hotel before heading out for the action. Holiday Inn Express Singapore Orchard Road, or Holiday Inn Singapore Orchard City Centre are great options which will give you the convenience of location without breaking your bank.
Fuel up before the race
Don’t let a growling stomach distract you from the roars of the engines on the track make sure you fuel up before the race. As food and beverage options within the Circuit Park can be on the pricier side, not to mention inundated with long queues, do as the pros do and get your fill before entering the arena.
Have an early dinner at the hotel before stepping out, or feast on wallet-friendly local street food at the various hawker centres in the Marina Bay vicinity. Satay by the Bay or Makansutra Gluttons Bay beside the Esplanade Waterfront Grandstand are popular food spots for local delicacies like Char Kway Teow, Chicken Rice or Satay grilled marinated meat skewers.
‘Chope’ the best vantage points and navigate the Circuit Park like a pro
Stay ahead of the competition and identify the best vantage points for watching the race. Reece the area at least an hour before the race and ‘Chope’, or reserve, a spot by a major turn along the track to ensure you are in pole position to catch the best view of the action.
Take note of the exit points on your way in and plan your departure to avoid being stuck in human traffic on the way out after the race ends. Most spectators tend to start making their way to the exit at least 15 minutes before the end of the post-race concert to get a head start.
If you want to steer clear of the crowd entirely, you can also enjoy an impressive aerial view of the circuit and the dazzling display of fireworks from one of the city’s sky high bars such as LeVe133 at Marina Bay Financial Centre or I-Altitude, the world’s highest al fresco bar on the roof of One Raffles Place.
Stay hydrated and pack supplies
While gearing up for the race, F1 drivers condition their bodies to endure extreme gravitational forces and other physical demands. With Singapore’s tropical climate and high humidity, they also drink up to eight litres of water during each race to stay hydrated especially as temperatures heat up in the cockpit.
“Staying hydrated is very important especially for visitors who are not used to Singapore’s tropical climate. Do wear comfortable shoes, bring a small face towel or pack a bottle of face mist to help you stay refreshed after hours of walking and standing outdoors in the Circuit Park.” said Lucinda Neo, Front Office Manager, Intercontinental Singapore.
Switch gears with slow food and free flow rosé
Those who prefer to cruise along a more leisurely speed can still enjoy the high-octane F1 weekend over a laid-back dinner that celebrates the essence of the sport. Paying homage to the legendary Enzo Ferrari who dedicated his life to the building of fast cars and a championship racing team, Publico Ristorante will be launching a tribute menu inspired by his birthplace, Moderna.
Available over the Singapore Grand Prix season from 14th to 16th September, diners can expect exclusive highlights including Enzo Ferrari’s favourite recipe, Tortellini della Signora Cesira – tortellini sauteed with butter, sage and parmesan. Heighten your experience with free flow AIX rose (SGD$90++) while staying up to speed with live screening of races on the large screens of the restaurant’s breezy terraza.