Our brush with F1

Singapore has an annual F1 race, the Singapore Grand Prix.  I’m told it’s a unique grand prix race as it’s the only one at night.  This was the fifth annual SGGP (Singapore Grand Prix), and it has just been renewed for another five years, so it will continue to be mid-late September through 2017.

I wrote this entry about the event in 2010.  Last year, I was more or less on bed rest, so I was pretty unaffected by F1 as they weren’t racing in my apartment.

After our experiences in 2010, our strategy with F1 has been to avoid the area they race in/have road closures in as much as possible.  Cabs have a reasonable amount of access to the area outside of race times, so prior to this year if we absolutely had to go into that area (Ellie’s gymnastics school is in the middle of the course, more or less), we just took a cab.

In general, having a car makes most things easier for me in Singapore.  But this year it meant I had to keep up with road closures (which were well publicized), and we needed a special sticker/access pass to drive to Marina Square (where E and Rhi have gymnastics).

Sorry–bad cell phone picture

I fumbled a bit with the route I had to take to Marina Square, but we added in extra time (and still ended up getting there a few minutes late).  It was weird to get waved onto a deserted lane of traffic , and to see that part of Singapore devoid of traffic.
We entered the parking lot by a hotel on the opposite side of the road from our usual entrance to the parking garage (the carpark for Marina Square shares space with two hotels), and had to stop for a police inspection.  They gave us a cursory glance (I guess the two kids in car seats in the back marked us as not threatening) and gave us a slip of paper to put in the dashboard.

another cell phone pic

Marina Square isn’t usually jam packed on a Saturday afternoon, but there are usually a reasonable number of cars.  It was strange to see the lot practically barren.  Well, barren except for a large number of sports cars that I assume had something to do with F1 as they were behind tape, had people guarding them, and plenty of people were taking photos of them.    For us it was great as we got a parking spot right by the elevators closest to The Little Gym.

cell phone pic.  I purposefully set up the image so that you could see the normal cars and the F1 cars together

After class we got back in the car, and followed a series of confusing signs to the exit.  It was a bit frustrating as at times you were supposed to follow the actual car park’s exit signs and at others there were special exit signs.  But once we finally found the one open exit, we headed out and away from the F1 area.

For all that F1 can be a bit of a hassle, there is an a major benefit–if you’re willing to stay away from the designated area, dinner reservations are absurdly easy to get.  We went to the Dempsey Hill area and had no trouble parking, nor were the restaurants very busy (which is not my impression of what that area is like on a regular Saturday night).

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2 Responses to Our brush with F1

  1. Katrijn says:

    Brunch at Boomerangs on Robertson Quay however was ridiculously busy on Sunday morning – not ideal if you’re in the business of feeding and entertaining three toddlers! Well, having brought crayons, I think we both left our mark and the message… 😀

    And I too saw EVEN MORE sports cars than usual clogging the roads! Like five Porsches Cayman (Porsche Caymen? How do I pluralize that) in a row on Bukit Timah Road – all in different colours, all with Pirelli stickers on the back. Ah, Big City Life!

    • Crystal says:

      The drag racing on River Valley Road hit a fever pitch this weekend. It’s always a bit loud at 2am on a weekend night, but it was almost nonstop this past weekend (and we’re not on the race circuit!)

      I can only imagine what Boomerang’s was like on Sunday. I should’ve invited you over to our house!

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