Grand Prix Experiences Blog

Don’t Miss Out on the Final Stretch of the Formula 1™ Season!

Posted by Kristen Doolan on Mon, Sep 19, 2016 @ 03:09 PM

As we hit the final stretch of the Formula 1™ season, there is still much action, adventure and thrill to catch at the race track. With races left across the World in Malaysia, Japan, United States, Mexico and Abu Dhabi, Grand Prix Experiences is the company to turn to!


USGP_141030_Seymour_0140-1.jpgHosted at the Circuit of The Americas™ track in Austin, Texas this race held from October 21-23rd is steadily approaching. With top teams confirmed to hit the pavement, this race is building to be one for the history books. You will have access to exclusive hospitality venues, celebrity appearances, gourmet food and beverage options, fast access passes and much more!

Package Spotlight – Gold B: Enjoy impeccable views of the pit action, screaming straight, final turn and finish line with this F1 USGP™ option. With package inclusions such as fast access passes, Legends Club Hospitality access with celebrity appearances by Indy 500 Champions Danny Sullivan and Alexander Rossi, gourmet food buffets in a climate-controlled venue, you can’t go wrong!


Hit this newly-renovated track to experience all the excitement and passion that Mexico brings to the race track. With official grandstand hospitality, exclusive insider extras, preferred seating options and breathtaking views, you can’t go wrong with any option. Take VIP to the next level with access to the Support Race Paddock, Pit Lane Walks and the F1™ Village.

Package Spotlight – Forte Sol North: Friday to Sunday access, open-air, bench style seating and privileged views and front-row seating to the trophy presentation round out this amazing package. Add in travel and lodging to match your breathtaking views of Turns 12, 13, 14 and 15 to complete your experience.

Formula One Paddock Club™

Experience Paddock Club access at any of the F1™ WW events left in the 2016 season. With privileged views ofFormula-One-US-Grand-Prix-Formula-One-Paddock-Club-View-Main-Straight-Stretch-Grand-Prix-Expereinces-1.jpg the race, gourmet dining and fine wines, music entertainment, driver interviews, Paddock Club is the way to have the most desirable race experience. You will also have access to exclusive insider extras available such as pit lane walk, the Support Paddock Race, access to F1™ Village, VIP Parking availability and much more.

Catch the end of the Formula 1™ season before it’s too late! Between exclusive insider extras, unheard of access and privileged views at each track, Grand Prix Experiences has the best of the best.

Get Your Grand Prix Ticket Packages!

Topics: Formula One

Don’t Miss Out on This While at the F1™ USGP

Posted by Kristen Doolan on Thu, Aug 25, 2016 @ 09:08 AM

With the first day of the 2016 FORMULA ONE UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX™ right around the corner on October 21st, you must start planning your trip to Austin, Texas. Known as one of the more popular youngprofessional and family-centered cities in the United States, Austin is sure full of life. From its abundant number of lakes and parks for outdoor activities to its nickname as the “live music capital of the world”, your trip to the F1™ USGP will be one of a lifetime.


Veracruz Tacos, 2711 La Frontera Blvd, STE 320 Round Rock, TX 7868: Check out this hot spot featured by Rachael Ray and Rolling Stone serving fresh tacos, homemade salsas, and authentic tortillas and chips.

Boiler Nine Bar & Grill, 800 W Cesar Chavez Street Austin, TX 78701: Located in downtown Austin, this art deco styled bar & grill isn’t one to miss. Visit them for Brunch. Lunch or Dinner to enjoy tapas style dinning.

Forthright, 98 San Jacinto Blvd Austin, TX 78701: Serving Breakfast and Lunch with a relaxed style is the name of the game for Forthright. If you need a place to relax and/or enjoy a well prepared meal with straightforward ingredients, this is your place!

Wu Chow, 500 W 5th Street Austin, Texas 78701: Looking for classic Chinese dishes while in Austin? Check out Wu Chow! With their eclectic dining and relaxed atmosphere, it’s no wonder this restaurant lands on the hottest places to go in Austin.  

Things to Do

Lady Bird Lake Hike-and-Bike Trail: Hit the outdoors and explore this lush green park and peaceful lake. Walk, bike, ride or just sit and relax at this amazing spot in Austin.

Haunted Austin and Bat Bridge Segway Tour: Explore Austin’s haunted past and visit the bat bridge while learning more about the history behind what makes Austin, Austin.

Sixth Street: Find all the nightlife that Austin has to offer on sixth street. From live music, to historic venues this downtown spot is the place to be!


Marriott Round Rock: Located just 30 miles from the Circuit of The Americas™ Austin Track,
 the Marriott Round Rock offers exceptional amenities for their guests. Relax in your hotel room with the comfort of plush mattresses and down comforters, while enjoying their well-known RC Grille which is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Don’t forget about the indoor pool and fitness center located on the property, making this accommodation choice ideal for any traveler.

Sheraton Austin: Looking to be in the middle of it all? Then the Sheraton Austin is yoCircuit-of-The-Americas-Experiences-F1-USGP-Racing-Austin-002.jpgur most promising choice - located only 18 miles from the Circuit of The Americas™ Austin Track and just steps away from Sixth Street/Warehouse District and the University of Texas. With two different dining options and well-appointed bedding, this hotel option makes your stay as comfortable as possible.

Don’t Forget Your Ticket to the F1™ USGP

As the only exclusive provider of ticket packages available through Circuit of The Americas™ program, Grand Prix Experiences is the package provider to go with! From our Legends Club access with Q&A sessions with Alexander Rossi, privileged viewing positions along the track and gourmet fare – this is not something you want to miss!


Get Legends Club Access Today!


Topics: Formula One, United States Grand Prix

British GP Review: Hamilton’s Fourth Home Victory

Posted by Darragh Farrelly on Tue, Jul 12, 2016 @ 09:07 AM

There was an undeniable sense of unpredictable predictability before this race even started. 52 laps and an hour and a half later, that came to fruition. Lewis Hamilton won the British Grand Prix for the third year in a row. With the aid of a safety car, the Briton cut teammate Nico Rosberg’s championship lead by a further 10 points, now going to the mid-season race in Hungary separated by a solitary point.

Hamilton_Silverstone.jpgWith Hamilton’s fourth victory on British soil, he became the most successful driver on home turf, matching Nigel Mansell’s four victories (one of them came at Brands Hatch). Despite the rain fall actually stopping before the start of the race, the race began behind a safety car, with FIA Chief Charlie Whiting keeping the race as it was for the opening five laps. Despite the initial downpour, Hamilton, who led for every lap of the race aside from when he changed from intermediates to slicks, left the track crowd surfing a wave of unbridled joy. Literally. Rosberg and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen filled the places on the podium.

Hamilton’s day got better when Rosberg, who initially finished second, was demoted to third after he suffered a gearbox failure which led to the German receiving a penalty for the second consecutive race. Race stewards handed him a 10-second penalty after the detail of the help Mercedes gave him over the radio, which transgressed limitations on the amount of help drivers can be given by teams. Shortly after the race, Mercedes confirmed they will appeal the decision. 18-year-old Max Verstappen once again showed undoubted class and awesome speed as he gave Rosberg a serious run for his money and eventually finished runner-up again to Hamilton. Without question, we are witnessing the emergence of the next great talent in F1™, and a champion in-waiting. One begs the question, should Red Bull driver Max Verstappen get a competitive vehicle underneath him, the whole landscape of the Formula 1™ will be shifted in the shape of Verstappen.


What Did We Learn from Silverstone?

Despite Mercedes’ continued dominance, Red Bull’s speed proved they are not too far away. This was a weekend that marked a change in the fortunes of the Milton Keynes-based constructor. Now 18 points clear of Ferrari in the constructor’s championship, Verstappen’s RB12 oozed poise, especially under these testing conditions. On the other end of the scale, Sebastien Vettel endured yet another disappointing race, finishing a lowly 9th position, now currently fifth place in the championship. The four-time world champion, who was regarded as the Mercedes monopoly this season, has failed to live up to the hype in 2016. At the halfway point in the season, one point separates Rosberg and Hamilton. It is hard to conceive anybody but one of the Mercedes’ drivers claiming the title. Who? That’s too close to call at this point of the season, a flip of a coin, really.

Witness The Action Live!

F1_USGP.jpgAs we move towards the business end of the F1™ season, don’t miss your chance to experience it all up close and personal. Kick off your Formula One Paddock Club™ access with Grand Prix Experiences – it’s literally the best seat in the house!  Enjoy the luxury that the Paddock Club offers with privileged views of the race, gourmet food spreads, an exclusive Pit Lane Walk, access to the Support Race Paddock, and much, much more!


Get Your Grand Prix Ticket Packages!

Topics: Formula One

Ranking F1™ Drivers On Their Home Soil

Posted by Darragh Farrelly on Wed, Jul 06, 2016 @ 02:07 PM

There’s no place like home. That sentiment bears a lot of relevance for F1™ drivers and their home circuits. This weekend, the extravaganza that is Formula 1™ racing pulls into Silverstone as the British GP is the main attraction. For Lewis Hamilton, it offers a chance to create history this weekend. On Sunday, he will attempt to equal Nigel Mansell's British record of four F1 wins at the circuit.

Perhaps it’s national pride, the idea of disappointing your fellow countrymen, an alliance to what you belong – whatever it may be, it seems, upon dissection, that F1 drivers flourish while steering their way around a home circuit. Patriotism.

Since 1983, 48 drivers have won on their home track. While that timeframe covers over thirty years, only 7 countries have been represented in that time – powerhouses of F1. Over that period, just 20 countries have appeared on the Formula 1 calendar, including new additions such as Azerbaijan (Baku) and Bahrain.

Home Advantage

Schumacher.jpgThe most successful driver on home soil was the imperious Michael Schumacher. Schumacher, a seven-time world champion, drove to victory an incredible ten times on German tracks. At the Nurburgring, home of the European GP from 1999 – 2007, Schumacher won on six occasions. His brother Ralf, also won there in 2003. Schumacher, Michael that is, also took the checkered flag four time at Hockenheimring from 1995 – 2006. German efficiency at its finest.

When arguing the success of drivers, it also must be noted that traditional racing countries, such as Germany, France, and Great Britain are often rewarded with staging races more so than others. However, giving the revolving schedule implemented by racing hierarchy, coupled with the world we live in today, experts foresee more countries and race tracks introduced in the coming years.

One venue which has been a constant since 1973 is the Brazilian GP. A country that has produced a plethora of talent, 31 drivers from Brazil have driven in the Formula 1 during that time. Ayrton Senna, Brazil’s most famous son, won on home soil in the most dramatic of fashions in 1991, overcoming gearbox issues and sheer exhaustion to a rapturous response. He also won there in 1993. Nelson Piquet (1983, 1986) and Felipe Massa (2006, 2008) both deserve honorable mentions for delighting a partisan crowd at Interlagos.

The French Professor

Senna’s greatest rival, the professor Alain Prost, won a remarkable six times at the French GP. Famously quoted for “fear of letting my countrymen down”, he also won on the streets of Monte Carlo on four occasions.

Prost-1.jpgA recurring theme you say? Most definitely. In more recent times, particularly given the dominance of such a small number of teams, we’ve seen this trend continued. Sebastien Vettel (German GP, 2013) Nico Rosberg (German GP, 2014) and Fernando Alonso (Spanish GP, 2013 & European GP, Valencia 2012) all became world champions in the process.

And so to this weekend and the British GP at Silverstone. Hamilton enters the race as a heavy favorite as he looks to close in on a fourth world title. Since 1986, British drivers have been successful on twelve occasions. It would be naïve to suggest that driving on home soil allows you to forego rival advances, but, as the history books have taught us, it most certainly gives drivers an edge. Patriotism is alive and well, it seems.

Meet Alexander Rossi at the USGP

Embrace your American hero in Alexander Rossi, as he appears at our Legends Club this October at the US Grand Prix in Austin. Rossi, at present the only American Formula One™ driver signed to a team, also shocked the world this year by winning the 100th edition of the Indy 500 as a rookie. The man himself will be on hand to meet and greet spectators at the Texas venue.  

Alexander_Rossi-1.jpgBy 2006 at 14 years of age, he’d become a multiple National and International Karting Champion and the youngest open wheel racing champion in United States history. Now nominated for the ESPY’s Best Driver award after his Indy 500 win with motor sports elite, the journey for Rossi to the top has been memorable.

The Legends Club Hospitality experience, available only through the Circuit of the Americas Experiences program, is available for Saturday and/or Sunday access. Indulge in the luxury of a private dining area featuring gourmet food, premium bars, interactive experiences, racing and celebrity appearances. This trackside venue is the perfect place to entertain clients to reunite with their group, with the benefit of sanctuary from the elements.

Get Your Grand Prix Ticket Packages!


Topics: Formula One

Rossi Nominated for 2016 ESPY’s Best Driver Award

Posted by Darragh Farrelly on Mon, Jun 27, 2016 @ 03:06 PM

Alexander Rossi is among the athletes nominated for the 2016 ESPY’s “Best Driver” award for his fuel-saving victory in the 100th edition of the Indianapolis 500, and his fans can help him earn it.

Alexander_Rossi.jpgRossi, a Nevada City native, was among the athletes nominated for the 2016 ESPY’s, ESPN’s annual sports awards set for a live broadcast July 13 from the Microsoft Theatre in Los Angeles.

IndyCar champ Scott Dixon was also nominated in the Best Driver category. Other nominees are NASCAR's Kyle Busch, Formula1™ 's Lewis Hamilton and NHRA's Erica Enders-Stevens.

Online voting will remain open until the July 13 event.

“It is such a huge honor to be nominated for Best Driver at the ESPYS this year,” Rossi said. “It will be a pleasure to spend an evening with such an exceptional group of athletes who have all accomplished something pretty incredible. I very much look forward to being able to represent and share my passion for the Verizon IndyCar Series next month.”

Rossi was also awarded the Fastest Rookie and Rookie of the Year honors for the 2016 Indianapolis 500. The 24-year-old became only the 10th rookie ever to win the 500-mile race in its history; the first since Helio Castroneves in 2001. Rossi is the second driver from the Andretti Autosport stable to be nominated for an ESPY award in the last four years. Rossi’s teammate, Ryan Hunter-Reay, took home “Best Driver” honors with both his nominations in 2013 and 2014.

Meet Rossi at Our Legends Club

Don’t miss your chance to meet Indy 500 winner and Formula One™ reserve driver Alexander Rossi in our Legends Club at the FORMULA 1 UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX™. Rossi, an IndyCar rookie who claimed the checkered flag at this year’s 100th Indy 500, will be on hand to meet and greet spectators at the Texas venue.  

Serving as a reserve driver for Manor Racing on the F1™ circuit since 2015, Alexander has won at every level since his racing career began in go-karts at age 10. By 2006 at 14 years of age, he’d become a multiple National and International Karting Champion and the youngest open wheel racing champion in United States history. Now nominated for the ESPY’s Best Driver award after his Indy 500 win with motor sports elite, the journey for Rossi to the top has been memorable.

F1_USGP.jpgThe Legends Club Hospitality experience, available only through the Circuit of the Americas Experiences program, is available for Saturday and/or Sunday access. Indulge in the luxury of a private dining area featuring gourmet food, premium bars, interactive experiences, racing and celebrity appearances. This trackside venue is the perfect place to entertain clients to reunite with their group, with the benefit of sanctuary from the elements. 


                                                Get Your Grand Prix Ticket Packages!

Topics: Formula One

European GP: Rosberg Back to Best

Posted by Darragh Farrelly on Mon, Jun 20, 2016 @ 03:06 PM

It was a tale of two differing stories for the Mercedes’ team as Nico Rosberg dominated the European Grand Prix, with Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton struggled to fifth place.

Rosberg led from the first corner and never looked back as Hamilton struggled to make up ground in the inaugural race in Azerbaijan. The world champion started 10th and was hampered by a problem with an engine setting during the race.

Rosberg.jpgWith Rosberg’s victory, Hamilton is now 24 points adrift of the German in the championship as a result. Hamilton said he had an "off day" in qualifying and Mercedes were at a loss to understand what happened.

Nico Rosberg is again in charge of his own destiny – and with Austria to come, where he has won for the past two years, there was an extra spring in his step after the weekend’s racing. All signs are pointing in the right direction for him. With two bad race weekends behind him (Monaco and Montreal), Rosberg’s five victories compared to Hamilton’s two have left the Briton with little room to maneuver in this year’s championship.

Vettel Takes His Own Advice

Ferrari finally had a strong race - only after Vettel decided not to listen to engineers and not pit when they asked him to

Ferrari’s decision-making this season has left a lot to be desired, particularly after the criticisms of their decision to switch to a two-stop while leading in Canada a week ago. This time, Vettel questioned the team and after initially saying he had to stop because he was going to be under-cut by Ricciardo, they kept him out - stopping Raikkonen instead, which led to a strong second place finish.

On the face of it, Ferrari’s showing in Baku was more than decent, with Vettel finishing second and his team-mate Kimi Raikkonen fourth, but only after Vettel totally ignored a call to pit for fresh rubber. Vettel was helped by troubles at Red Bull, and by Lewis Hamilton’s failure to find his right engine mode. But he was right to show a lack of faith in his team and that is why he finished strongly.

Baku Delivers

Baku.jpgPolitics aside, Baku was a great success. Despite some chaotic safety restarts in GP2 earlier on, the venue delivered massively over the course of the weekend.

Vettel was in no doubt. “It’s the first time here and I didn’t know what to expect but it’s been a great track,” he said. “The circuit is incredible – you need to be well equipped around here.”

See The Action Live!       

As we move towards the business end of the F1™ season, don’t miss your chance to experience it all up close and personal. Kick off your Formula One Paddock Club™ access with Grand Prix Experiences – it’s literally the best seat in the house!  Enjoy the luxury that the Paddock Club offers with privileged views of the race, gourmet food spreads, an exclusive Pit Lane Walk, access to the Support Race Paddock, and much, much more!


 Get Your Grand Prix Ticket Packages!

Topics: Formula One

Canadian Grand Prix Previewed: Hamilton Closing on Rosberg

Posted by Darragh Farrelly on Tue, Jun 07, 2016 @ 10:06 AM

“Stronger Than Ever”


Following on from last week’s race down the streets of Monte Carlo, Lewis Hamilton goes to Montreal and the Canadian Grand Prix after his victory in Monaco full of confidence. Despite recent criticism over his lifestyle and form this season, Hamilton insists he is “stronger than ever” as he looks to close the gap on teammate Nico Rosberg in the drivers’ championship.

“I've proven that I'm just as strong as I've ever been and I will be for the rest of the year, so I'm looking forward to the next chapter,” Hamilton said.

“Montreal has always been a good track for me, so hopefully I'm able to shine like I did the first time I went there in that great city atmosphere.” 

Circuit Gilles Villeneuve

Canadian_circuit.jpgLocated on the man-made Ile Notre Dame in the St Lawrence river, the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is a true high speed challenge with a picturesque backdrop. Having been staged at the Montreal circuit since 1978, German legend Michael Schumacher holds the record for the most wins at the circuit (7). Current world champion Lewis Hamilton has won here four times, including his first ever win back in 2007.

Originally named the Île Notre-Dame Circuit, the circuit was built and finished in 1978. In 1982, it was renamed in honor of Canadian Formula One driver Gilles Villeneuve, father of Jacques Villeneuve, following his death earlier in the year. The circuit is located in a part of the city of Montreal known as Parc Jean-Drapeau.

The final sector of the lap sees cars travel alongside the Bassin olympique, a stretch of water which was used in the 1976 Olympic Games for rowing and canoeing events. 

The famous last corner of Circuit Gilles Villeneuve became well known for crashes involving former World Champions. In 1999, Damon Hill, Michael Schumacher and Jacques Villeneuve all crashed into the same wall which had the slogan Bienvenue au Québec (Welcome to Quebec) on it. The wall became ironically known as the "Wall of Champions".

The Numbers

  • The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve has a length of 4.361 km, according to the official Formula One website, with the average lap taking around 75 seconds to complete.
  • The races 70 laps see cars complete a distance of 305.270 km, with the grand prix usually lasting between 90 and 95 minutes.
  • The lap record is held by former Ferrari driver Rubens Barrichello, who set a time of 1:13.622s on Lap 68 of the 2004 Canadian Grand Prix.
  • Apart from Hamilton, Kimi Raikkonen (2005),Fernando Alonso (2006), Jenson Button (2011) and Sebastian Vettel (2013) are the only current drivers to win at the track.
  • The longest race in F1™ history took place here in 2011, when it took Jenson Button 4h 4m 39.537s (which included a two-hour rain break) to complete the race. Jenson Button prevailed in the most dramatic of circumstances, fighting back from 21st on the road to pass Sebastian Vettel on the final lap.

Who’s Your Money On?

A Mercedes driver. It’s as simple as that. Though Red Bull drivers Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen have shown huge promise in the first six races of this season, speed will ultimately win this race.

Ruing his luck in Monaco, Championship leader Nico Rosberg hopes he has used up all his bad fortune following a lowly seventh place finish in Monte Carlo. “I expected and prepared myself for some difficult races after the awesome start to the season,” Rosberg said.

Make no mistake about it though, all the momentum lies with Hamilton. After a topsy-turvy start to his season, all signs point to the three-time world champion being right back on track after his first victory this season. “I have to say how grateful I am to my mechanics for sticking at it and sticking with me after what's not been an easy start this year,” said Hamilton.

And what of arguably the best driver of his generation, Sebastian Vettel? His Ferrari is getting better, he says. Despite demonstrating the pace to do so last time out, Ferrari and Vettel have failed to win a race so far this year. After setting a blistering pace in practice in Monaco, Vettel’s fourth place finish left a lot to be desired. "This year by nature the gap is smaller, we are closer, we probably haven't had smooth races like we had in the beginning last year, so things didn't yet come together which is also our fault,” claimed Vettel.

Form is temporary and class is permanent, or so they say. With 42 wins and an improving Ferrari under him, expect Vettel to be in the shake-up this weekend in Montreal. Will he beat both Mercedes’ drivers to the checkered flag? Doubtful, but a place on the podium would represent a good result for the Italian team.

See A Race Live!

2014_ASM_BAHRAIN_IMG_02.jpgAs we move towards the business end of the F1™ season, don’t miss your chance to experience it all up close and personal. Kick off your Formula One Paddock Club™ access with Grand Prix Experiences – it’s literally the best seat in the house!  Enjoy the luxury that the Paddock Club offers with privileged views of the race, gourmet food spreads, an exclusive Pit Lane Walk, access to the Support Race Paddock, and much, much more!

Get Your Grand Prix Ticket Packages!

With the deficit at the top of the leaderboard down to just 24 points between the two Mercedes drivers, Formula One™ begins one of the busiest periods in its history this weekend in Canada, with six races in the next eight weeks.

Topics: Formula One

Monaco Grand Prix - What's It All About and Predicting the Outcome

Posted by Darragh Farrelly on Fri, May 27, 2016 @ 02:14 PM

Monte Carlo

monaco-grand-prix.jpgMonte Carlo is the place to be this weekend. Well, aside from the other 51 weekends of the year, of course. The Monaco Grand Prix will see some of the wealthiest people in the world come out in force as they witness one of sport’s most prestigious and spectacular events.

With the Principality of Monaco as a backdrop, the sun-kissed mountains and yacht-filled harbor which border the Mediterranean Sea, many have dubbed the Circuit de Monaco "an exceptional location of glamour and prestige.” It is by far the most popular and important race on the Grand Prix calendar.

The race is held on the narrow streets of Monte Carlo, and with its high-tempo chicane and tight twists and turns, drivers describe Monaco as the toughest and most demanding track on the calendar. Taking about six weeks to construct through the narrow streets of Monaco, it takes about three weeks to disassemble, or 250 races run back-to-back.

Fun Facts

  • The Monaco Grand Prix was first held back in 1929. It has been on the Formula One calendar uninterrupted since 1950.
  • McLaren have scored the most victories at the Monaco race with fifteen wins. The second most successful team is Ferrari with nine. 
  • Drivers on average change gears 54 times per lap at Monaco.
  • The Monaco circuit is the shortest Grand Prix track on the calendar at 3,340 kilometers. The race distance of 260,520 km is the shortest of the season and nowhere else does a race cover more laps (78).
  • The great Ayrton Senna has won the race (6) more times than anyone. He dominated the race from 1987 to 1993. Michael Schumacher and Graham Hill have both won with five teams in Monte Carlo.
  • Fernando Alonso is the only driver to have won the race in consecutive years for different constructors, winning for Renault in 2006 and McLaren in 2007.
  • Current World Champion Lewis Hamilton has won this race once, in 2008. Having qualified on pole position last year, he finished third.


Steve_Monaco_IMG_9963.jpgThis Year’s Contenders

Coming off the back of a maiden F1™ victory in the Spanish Grand Prix, 18-year-old Max Verstappen will be high on confidence. The same can’t be said for Verstappen’s Red Bull teammate Daniel Ricciardo. The Australian was left enraged by a pit wall in the Spanish GP that saw him ‘take one for the team’ in place of Verstappen and had to settle for a fourth-place finish. Having started this week’s practice off at a blistering pace, many see Ricciardo as a genuine threat to take the checkered flag. Of course, a lot depends on qualifying on Saturday, given the unique nature of this circuit. World champion Lewis Hamilton, winless in 2016, enters this race with a lot at stake. Already 43 points behind Rosberg in the drivers’ standings, a win this weekend would revive his challenge.

Prediction: Lewis Hamilton – experience is key around this track and the world champion cannot slip any further behind the championship lead.

Don’t Miss the Canadian Grand Prix

As we move towards the business end of the F1™ season, don’t miss your chance to experience it all up close and personal. Kick off your Formula One Paddock Club™ access with Grand Prix Experiences – it’s literally the best seat in the house!  Enjoy the luxury that the Paddock Club offers with privileged views of the race, gourmet food spreads, an exclusive Pit Lane Walk, access to the Support Race Paddock, and much, much more!

Get Access to the  Canadian Grand Prix

Topics: Formula One

Nico Rosberg: In It to Win It

Posted by Jaime Villegas on Tue, Apr 05, 2016 @ 05:04 PM

Mercedes’ Nico Rosberg is two for two this season and is sitting pretty with five consecutive wins all together from 2015. Let’s take a look at who was able to prevail in the desert and who was left in the dust.


Rosberg Rewind

Rosberg’s teammate Lewis Hamilton dropped to ninth on the opening lap after Turn 1 contact with Williams’ Valtteri Bottas, but in a damaged car fought his way back to secure a lonely final podium place. The second Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel failed to start after a suspected engine failure on the formation lap.

Rosberg didn’t put a wheel wrong in Bahrain’s twilight. As Hamilton and Raikkonen made poor starts, he sped into a lead that was never seriously contested, thus increasing his championship lead. Whenever Raikkonen pushed, he responded, keeping clear of the red threat to score his second consecutive win of 2016, and his fifth in a row since Mexico last year. Two races in, and he has a 17-point lead over his reigning champion teammate…

Mario_china_11-1.jpgRaikkonen is ThisClose

Raikkonen kept the pressure up as they both ran the super-soft Pirelli tires on which they had qualified before switching to softs. Hamilton, with time to make up after being half spun in the first corner by an over-enthusiastic Bottas (who was given a drive-through penalty for his pains), switched to mediums on his first stop as he embarked on yet another 2016 damage-limitation race.

Raikkonen got close to Rosberg at times, but never close enough as Rosberg always had an answer. They each switched back to super-softs in their second stops, as did Hamilton, but it was clear the race lay between Rosberg and Raikkonen. They shadowed each other yet again in their final stops, back to softs, but in the end the Mercedes driver was 10.2s ahead.

2014_ASM_MALAYSIA_IMG_05-2.jpgHurry Up, Hamilton!

Hamilton, who had been breathtaking on the mediums as he matched the leaders, took softs for his final stint and for a while closed in, but the first-lap damage to his car was too limiting and he finished a distant third.

Hamilton was lucky insofar as he was able to continue, but Toto Wolff estimated that floor and bargeboard damage cost the world champion up to a second a lap. He is now 17 points adrift of his teammate, and it’s beginning to look like the start of 2014 all over again. But we all know how that turned out in the end…

Haas: The American Dream

Haas did a fabulous job to finish sixth with Romain Grosjean on their debut in Australia, but fifth here was even better because it was won the hard way. Yet again strategist Ruth Buscombe took an aggressive stance, which was made possible when Hulkenberg bumped Grosjean from Q3 in the dying seconds of Q2 and freed up their tire choice.

Two sets of new super-softs, another used set, and a set of new softs enabled the Frenchman to withstand a delay in his final stop and still finish well, though arguably that might even have cost them fourth place. It’s a long time since a new team looked so accomplished, which might explain Grosjean’s slightly OTT (over-the-top) post-race radio message.

Chinese Grand Prix, Here We Go!

The 2016 qualifying format may still be a contentious issue, but the choice of three tire compounds really has spiced things up and created a great race with battles throughout the field for the 57 laps.

Get to the Chinese Grand Prix with Grand Prix Experiences and enjoy F1™ racing as a true racing fan should! Get behind-the-scenes access, exclusive insider extras, premium hospitality, and more!

China Grand Prix Official Ticket Packages


Topics: Formula One

8 Things We Learned From the F1™ Australia Grand Prix

Posted by Jaime Villegas on Thu, Mar 24, 2016 @ 02:03 PM

2014_ASM_AUSTRALIA_IMG_05.jpgThe season opener has a habit of throwing up interesting statistics, and so it proved again on Sunday. Nico Rosberg of Mercedes fought for every inch he earned on the track on Sunday, and it proved to be enough as he took home the checkered flag. Plenty of noteworthy things happened in the 2016 F1™ opener which made it hard for us to narrow it down to eight.

  • In finishing second, Lewis Hamilton matched Michael Schumacher’s record of six podium finishes in Australia. On Saturday the Briton joined the great German in becoming one of just three drivers (the other being Ayrton Senna) to have scored 50 or more pole positions in F1 racing.

    Hamilton fought early on to get out from the middle of the pack as the beginning of the race, which was something different than what we’ve come to expect from the Mercedes crew. It didn’t take them long to work through the poor start as they found their footing and soon proved that they are still the team to beat in Formula One™. Though helped in part by the red flag brought on by Fernando Alonso’s crash and subsequently, Ferrari’s decision to not change tire compounds during that red flag, Rosberg showed that Mercedes still have the ability to control a race comfortably from the front.

  • Romain Grosjean’s sixth place finish ensured Haas became the first brand-new team to score points on their Grand Prix debut since Mika Salo finished sixth for Toyota in 2002. Haas are also the first American team to score points since the similarly named (but completely unaffiliated) Team Haas finished sixth with Alan Jones at Monza in 1986. Worth noting that Grosjean only finished in the top six once last season with Lotus.

    Grosjean without a doubt exceeded all expectations to claim sixth in Haas’ debut race. Again, without the red flag, it’s unlikely Grosjean would have even scored one point, but his driving in the second half of the race was world-class, and he deserved every single one of the eight points he scored.  2014_ASM_AUSTRALIA_IMG_04.jpg

  • Daniel Ricciardo’s fourth place finish equaled the best result for an Australian driver on home soil – a tie with Mark Webber’s fourth place in 2012. Ricciardo also became just the second Australian - again after Webber - to record a fastest lap at home.

    Daniel Ricciardo enjoyed a successful home race after an average qualifying performance. The Australian worked his way up to sixth, working with super-soft tires, but these were switched for a new set of softs during the red flag stoppage. He was overtaken by Lewis Hamilton and his second stop dropped him to fifth, but soon after leaving the pits Ricciardo overtook Felipe Massa to reclaim fourth.

  • Max Verstappen’s tenth place finish ensured he is now - at 18 - the youngest points scorer in Australian Grand Prix history. Current Red Bull driver Daniil Kvyat had previously held the record for finishing ninth as a 19-year-old on his debut in 2014.

    The younger generation continues to come to the proverbial table ready to play. Sure it’s going to take them a few seasons to find their groove, but much like Stella, they’re bound to find it soon!

  • Speaking of Daniil Kvyat, the Russian has now failed to take the start in two successive season openers in Australia because of mechanical woes.

    Daniil Kvyat was forced to watch from the sidelines yet again, he said that the retirement didn’t affect him as badly as his similar problem the year before when he made his Red Bull Racing debut. The unfortunate snafu begs the question, “What Russia do to Australia? Is there a feud we don’t know about?”

  • Three drivers finished the race in identical positions to where they finished in the same race last season: Sebastian Vettel (in third), Nico Hulkenberg (in seventh) and Carlos Sainz (in ninth).

    They say history is destined to repeat itself and we got a perfect glimpse of that with the Australian Grand Prix. Considering the major accident that occured, it is surprising to see these drivers place where they did.
  • For the first time ever in Melbourne, the first 13 drivers home finished on the lead lap – that’s the highest number in history, and a good indication of the competitive nature of the grid.

  • FIA’s safety standards DO work

    If there ever were an incident that represents a testament to the FIA’s gold standard safety regulations, it’s this one. Alonso’s McLaren flew, spun, and violently broke apart, yet the driver was completely unscathed and able to walk away from the wreck.

2014_ASM_BAHRAIN_IMG_02-1.jpgSee You in Bahrain!

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Topics: Formula One, Australian Grand Prix