Preview Guide

Track Talk: 2011 Singapore GP Preview

By Zaki JufriEvents - 20 September 2011 5:29 PM | Updated 10:02 AM

Track Talk: 2011 Singapore GP Preview

The stage has been set and the 1,500 lighting projectors surrounding the track are all primed for this weekend’s big event—The Formula 1 SingTel Singapore Grand Prix 2011.

After three editions, any suggestions of fatigue from fans and Singaporeans alike are all swept aside just by looking at ticket sales. It seems our very own grand sporting theatre will see a full house as more than 98 per cent of tickets have been sold and a staggering 80,000 petrolheads are expected for each of the three racing days. Not to mention that the Marina Bay Street Circuit makes for great television.

Red Bull Racing’s Sebastian Vettel’s triumph at Monza leaves him on the threshold of back-to-back titles with only six races remaining. The 24-year-old has won eight of the thirteen races so far this season and finished on the podium in all except one.

With his 112-point lead and another 150 available over the final races, no one has yet been able to emerge as Vettel’s main rival now—not even team mate Mark Webber nor Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso or Jensen Button. The only way one of them could even clip the Red Bull main man’s wings is for him to miss a few races, but we don’t think that will happen anytime soon.

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Will Sebastian Vettel clinch the championship here in Singapore? Picture: LAT Photographic.

Vettel’s clinching of the championship here hinges on just 13 points. To do this, all he needs to do is win the Singapore Grand Prix, edging out Alonso and out-scoring Button and Webber by eight points.

Seems easy you say? As in previous Singapore races, anything can happen under the glare of the 5.073 km street-circuit. Being a street-circuit, overtaking is a challenge as demonstrated by Hamilton last year when an attempt to pass Webber ended in both cars colliding and his race coming to an untimely end.

For two out of three races here, the king of the track is without doubt Alonso--first with Renault and then Ferrari. The only other winner is Lewis Hamilton in 2009. Will either of them edge out Vettel here and delay his crowning?

Will the new Pirelli tyres stand up to Singapore’s bumpy asphalt or will we see some spectacular overtaking with the new DRS system? Will the skies open up this week, bringing more drama and unpredictability to the track? For drivers Button and Hamilton, a wet track is a boon to them as they're both excellent wet weather drivers.

We also cannot forget all the off-track action. The Singapore Grand Prix has earned a reputation of throwing some of the best parties and entertainment on the racing calendar. With an entertainment line-up boasting the likes of Linkin Park, Shakira, Charice, Studio Festi and more this year; while Mariah Carey, Missy Elliott and Adam Lambert have also graced the circuit's stages. Everyone knows that The Formula 1 SingTel Singapore Grand Prix 2011 is more than just a race, it is Singapore's crowning event and motorsport's finest.

Whatever it is, racing fans are in for a treat as they can witness F1 history in the making right here in Singapore.