No trophy for guessing that this is a post about the Formula 1 Racing. Yup, yours truly had the privilege to being one of the advantaged few to witness the historic win of Vettle, (he became the youngest four-time world champion), in person from a vantage point. Before you jump to the conclusion that I am bragging, well partially I am, it isn’t everyday that I get to experience F1 races up close and personal from the sponsor’s Airtel’s lounge. So let me start from the beginning, when the heart almost took a somersault on receiving the invitation.
On Sunday me and husband left early to catch the pit walk and reach the venue before the crowds really started pouring in. We were led into the Paddock Club lounge by the gracious hostess and handed over the days schedule, wi-fi access cards and earplugs. This is exclusive seating with many privileges, of which pit stop walks and access to top notch hospitality is the star. First things first, we decided to go for the pit walk and were totally awed by what we saw. The names of the racers that we had only read about were blazing on the stands and we were standing right there in front of their garages and teams. One was as excited as well to use a cliché a child in the candy store.
Ofcourse photo shooting happened and at almost all the stops. Walking along side were Vijay Mallaya, Sahara’s Subroto Roy, Vir Sanghvi, Deepa Malik, Gulshan Grover and so many more frequently spotted on Page 3.
In the true Delhi style of celebration there was a bhangra performance that took place right there. True you can never take Dilli out of a Delhiite, doesn’t matter that they belong to the caviar and champagne league.
And yes, that was freely flowing too in the lounge. The extraordinary hospitality was well….extraordinary. Free flowing choicest wines paired with prawns, chicken, and other select stuff on the menu served with as much style and much much more.
To be very frank I hardly follow this game or its rules, but the excitement around, the energy and the vibes were palpable and pulsating. The adrenaline flowing as much as the wines. One could hear excited and animated chatter all around. There are many laps in a Formula 1 and it can take over 90 minutes, but the starting of the game deserves unwavering attention. The rev of the engine, the high decible sounds and the zoom of the cars leaves no one untouched, followers or not. That moment is breathtaking, its like now you see them and now you don’t, a blink of an eye and you missed it. After a couple of laps however one kind of gets used to the sameness and if you are like me, walk back to the comfort of the air-conditioning in the lounge and watch some laps on the huge screens. The friction and the speed, the smell of burnt tyres and the ease and quick that the tyres get replaced with new ones make you realise the value of a split second and how it really can be life changing. Well after a drink or two you do get philosophical isn’t it?
As the race approached the last couple of laps we sauntered on the terrace again. This time to witness the euphoria of the win. Vettle did a circular trance like couple of zooms after the win, almost like the sufi dervish. The tyres of course burnt and fumes rose as more bubbly popped and was showered on the media and others who were close enough on the track to share his win.
Next year it may not be. But the memories etched are forever, aren’t they. And especially if they are made of such awesome experience isn’t it?
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