Beginners guide to the Singapore Grand Prix

by Jules on September 18, 2012

The Singapore Grand Prix takes place on September 23rd 2012 and brings the major players in the fight for the Formula 1 Driver’s World Championship one step closer to victory. Entering its fifth season on the F1 calendar, Singapore is the only night race on the current F1 season creating a unique and exciting atmosphere.

The fourteenth race of the season takes place on just over 5 kilometers of public roads in the Marina Bay region of Singapore the race takes place at 8 pm Singapore time to allow a global television audience to watch the race. Motor races took place in Singapore between 1966 and 1973 before they were suspended because of a number of driver deaths and rising oil prices in the region. In 2008, the Singapore Grand Prix was brought back into existence by F1 to take place at night in front of over 80,000 spectators.

Three drivers have won the Singapore Grand Prix since 2008 with only Fernando Alonso winning the race twice in 2008 and 2010; the World Championship leader Alonso will be hoping to add a third victory for his Ferrari team. The winner of the 2009 race, Lewis Hamilton also won the last F1 race at the Monza track in Italy. Last season’s Singapore winner Sebastian Vettel retired from the Italian Grand Prix following a first corner crash, which also forced the retirement of Alonso and McLaren’s Belgian Grand Prix winner Jensen Button. Alonso, Hamilton and Lotus driver Kimi Raikkonen will all hope for victory to bring them a step closer to regaining the F1 World Championship crown.

Singapore’s 61 lap race travels a circuit length of 5.067 km (3.148 mi) and is the culmination of a race weekend that takes in practice on Friday September 21st and qualifying on Saturday September 22nd. The drivers will complete some 309.087 km (192.066 miles) in total on the Marina Bay Street Circuit. Spectators can fly into the region using the world class Changi Airport; travel in the Marina Bay area is easiest by public transport, including the MRT subway and bus lines. A cosmopolitan city, Singapore caters to the needs of travelers on all budgets.

The Singapore Grand Prix is one of the most popular on the Formula 1 race calendar because it is the only night race to take place in the history of F1. Driver and spectator safety is the most important factor in motor racing and is reflected in the lighting system used in Singapore; daylight conditions are replicated through the high power lights that cover the entire track. Drivers, including McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton have described the street circuit at Singapore as more physically demanding than F1’s traditional street circuit at Monaco.

Current Formula One Standings

The last F1 race, the Italian Grand Prix at Monza was thrilling and shuffled the driver’s results board up somewhat. The Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso remains the leading driver as we go into the Singapore GP with 179 points. Second and third place have changed since Monza with British driver Lewis Hamilton (who took first place at Monza) now second place on 142 points, just 37 behind Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen with 141 points in third place. Indeed the top 6 on the table are pretty close with Sebastian Vettel in fourth place currently on 140 points, Mark Webber fifth with 132 points and Brit Jenson Button on 101 points.

F1 Scoring System Explained

In case you wondered about the F1 points scoring system, here is a quick guide;
1st place = 25 points
2nd place = 18 points
3rd place = 15 points
4th place = 12 points
5th place = 10 points
6th place = 8 points
7th place = 6 points
8th place = 4 points
9th place = 2 points
10th place = 1 point
Drivers placed eleventh onwards do not receive any points.

Remaining Formula One Races for the 2012 season

This is the 14th race of the season and following Singapore there are just 6 races remaining, leaving the title wide open.

The remaining races are;
Japan on 7 October 2012
Korea on 14 October 2012
India on 28 October 2012
Abu Dhabi on 4 November 2012
United States on 18 November 2012
Brazil on 25 November 2012

Image Credit; chensiyuan on Wikipedia

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