Canadian GP

I had intended to write up the whole weekend but just running out of time so a few photos with captions instead. I’ve tried to illustrate as many areas of the track as possible to give an impression of how much of the event you can see with general admission tickets. All the elevated shots are from the Turn 2 grandstand which was our home for the weekend.

Support races:

Porsche IMSA GT3 Cup

Just one race on the Sunday morning before the GP. We watched practice from down at the hairpin and the other at Turn 2. A sodden race was won at a canter by Cooper McNeil in the #20 car. Very impressive performance, given the track conditions.

Defying conventional wisdom, the dry Formula Ford race was actually the better one. We watched from the main straight where 3-abreast slipstreaming battles were plentiful. Terrific stuff. The torrential conditions on Sunday meant everyone was treading fairly carefully. Hopefully this shot offers some impression of how wet it was.

A brace Ferrari Chellenge encounters were fiercely contested by all-comers. In the end it was a double win for Enzo Potolicchio but not without severe pressure from Cooper McNeil, who was contesting both Porsche and Ferrari races. The second race, on Sunday morning, was an absolute belter with the pair changing places lap-after-lap at the front. In the end, McNeil made a last-lap error - which was subsequently mirrored by Vettel last in the day - to throw away vistory. The battle was one of the best I’ve ever witness though - absolutely magic stuff in extremely difficult conditions.

"]The 2011 Canadian Grand Prix

First practice on Friday morning and we watched from our seats in the Turn 2 grandstand. I stole down to the front of the stand which allowed a pretty good opportunity to get some shots of the cars at speed. Utterly thrilling to be so close to Formula One machinery at full chat. Everyone was finding their feet and even “smooth” Jenson Button had a big opposite lock moment. Managing the car’s understeer on turn-in seemed to be the imperative into Turn 2 with the sheer traction on the exit never less than breath-taking.

Second practice and it was scorching hot. This is what a contemporary F1 car looks like at maximum speed - 200mph plus. Wow.

Saturday morning before qualifying and down to the third chicane. Lewis was never less than totally committed, but of greater interest but was watching who could deploy DRS when. The Renault-Lotuses (as opposed to Lotus-Renaults) and the Red Bulls were visibly able to get the wing flaps banged open earlier than anyone else, as the below demonstrates, with the Williams past the exit of the corner and still not deployed. Also worth a glance is the Williams’ driveshaft angles which are noticably more acute than anyone else’s as a result of their tiny gearbox. A fascinating spectator spot offering a new perspective of a Grand Prix car at the limit. Finally, it provided a very visible reminder that everyone is trying up and down the grid. Timo Glock, in particular, was never less than spectacular, skimming the wall by the smallest margin of the whole field. Just because he’s towards the back doesn’t mean he ought to be there. His skill and commitment were something to behold.

Race day dawned wet. In fact it was raining at 7am as we left the hostel. To give you an idea - what kind of a chump would look like this unless provoked by unprecedented precipitation…?

Lewis was looking for his new friends in the stand (of course he was…)

Race started behind the safety car before Lewis stopped looking in the grandstands and started driving into people…

Then the safety car came out again.

Then everyone went inside for a rest while we spectators had to endure this. I cannot over-state how catastrophic the rain was. The word ‘biblical’ simply doesn’t do justice to how wet we were.

We waited an eternity. Then it was game-on. Webber had a skid.

Vettel looked to have it all in the bag - as smooth and controlled as you like.

Suddenly Jenson was looking good and he diced with Webber and a rejuvenated Schumacher.

Last lap and he was close. Within 500 metres, Vettel had thrown it all away. The crowd went wild. Except for the man in front of us who removed his cap from his head and threw it to the ground in disgust. To great comedy effect.

Rosberg crashed at the end.

Some Ferrari fans were a little over-optimistic.

And we walked the track to get back to the metro station. Saturated but elated.

Great stuff, apart from the fookin’ Porka’s :sick: :tired:

Brilliant write up, thank you.