Abu Dhabi Prepares For Formula 1 Grand Prix Showdown

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Abu Dhabi Prepares for Formula 1 end of season Race

Abu Dhabi Prepares for Formula 1 end of season Race

Not long after the conclusion of the Brazilian Grand Prix, which is the penultimate race on the Formula 1 Grand Prix calendar that was held in Sao Paulo on Sunday and which saw Sebastian Vettel take first place, all 12 race teams headed for the airport and began their stop-start 12,000-kilometre journey to the Emirate of Abu Dhabi with each driver having undoubtedly spent long periods of the past couple of days with little to do but contemplate this coming weekend’s possible permutations.

Abu Dhabi, as everyone now knows, is where it seems that the drivers’ championship will be decided and for the first time in the sport’s history, there are 4 potential winners all vying for the title at the season ending showpiece this weekend at the Yas Marina Circuit.

Spain’s Fernando Alonso who drives for Ferrari is in the driving seat and will be crowned champion as long as he finishes in the top 2 spots, but Vettel, his Red Bull-Renault teammate Mark Webber and Lewis Hamilton, the McLaren-Mercedes driver, are all capable of leaving the Emirates with the world championship trophy.

Preparations have already begun in the UAE capital with the drivers starting to arrive today,  some of whom will walk straight into promotional events for key sponsors and affiliates. Webber, for example, will appear tonight at a function organised by the Australian Embassy of Abu Dhabi.

His car, however, like the rest of the 12 race teams’ vehicles, will not arrive on Yas Island until tomorrow, in time for the following day’s public pit-lane walk, which starts at 2.00pm.

Friday will be when the Yas Marina circuit will really come to life with the deafening sound of high-speed F1 engines.

The GP2 series begins its practice session at 10.30am, before the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge takes place 1 hour later. Fernando Alonso, Sebastian Vettel and the other F1 drivers will take to the track for the first time at 1.00pm for 90 minutes of practice, before returning at 5.00pm for a 2nd time.

As F1 enthusiasts discovered at the capital’s inaugural event last year, a race weekend never seems to last as long as the surrounding hype suggests. By 6.00pm on Saturday afternoon, following a 1 hour long 3rd practice session and the all-important qualifying, all that remains for Bernie Ecclestone and his Formula One circus is the little matter of what is expected to be the most watched race of the season. And, of course, the celebratory end-of-season after-party.

And while Abu Dhabi will not host the last race of next year due to that honour falling to Brazil, the UAE capital will at least technically be host to the first action of the new 2011 season.

All 12 race teams will remain in the Emirates for a further 7 days after the grand prix comes to a close, with young driver testing being carried out at the start of next week.

Then, the following weekend, the newly-crowned world champion and his 23 fellow racers are provided the opportunity to test the new Pirelli compound tyres, which are to replace Bridgestone from next season.

Category: Abu Dhabi, Etihad Airways, Yas Marina Circuit

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