The Big Day had arrived! It was the day of the 2015 Belgian Grand Prix! Saturday was a disaster for Ferrari and Kimi but Sunday was the day that mattered and with renewed hopes I set out early in the morning hoping to catch up on some action before the race!
Enroute to the circuit :
Walking to the circuit from La Source. There are driving experiences available at Spa Francorchamps :
La Source from the Paddock Club :
GP2 grid being readied for the Sprint Race :
Shots of the Ferrari F1 Club with the GoPro Hero4 Black :
1 Minute to Formation Lap :
Video Link to the GP2 Sprint Race Formation Lap :
GP2 Sprint Race Start ( Video Link ) :
GP2 Sprint Race Lap 1 ( Video Link ) :
Shots from the GP2 Sprint Race :
GP2 cars going around Blanchimont and into the Bus Stop Chicane :
Shots of the GoPro!
A Quick Selfie of Sorts with Lewis Hamilton :
Maurizio Arrivabene later joined by Kimi Raikkonen in the Ferrari F1 Club :
Video Link to Arrivabene and Raikkonen Interview. Apologies for the poor sound quality :
Both looking in different directions. EPIC SELFIE FAIL :
Maurizio Arrivabene being gracious as always :
Lunch before the final Pit lane walk of the weekend :
Shots from the Pit Lane Walk :
Trackside photos before the grid fills up!
Photos from the Pit Lane Walk with the GoPro Hero4 Black :
Drivers returning from the Track Parade :
A Moment with Kevin Magnussen. Hope to see him return to the grid.
Grid Girls making it to the Grid :
Some Photos with the GoPro! We all had to pick our places!
Martin Brundle's Grid Walk :
Kimi Raikkonen and other drivers make it to the front of the grid for the national anthem :
Some More Shots of the Grid Preparations :
Ferrari's Race preparations in full swing :
Final Minutes of Preparation :
Kimi Raikkonen had to undergo a gearbox change but due to the numerous penalties around him, his effective grid position was 14th.
The Countdown to the Start of the Formation Lap ( in Minutes ) :
Cars roll out for the Formation Lap :
Blanchimont to the Bus Stop Chicane onto the Start Finish straight. The final leg of the Formation Lap :
Formation Lap Video Link ( GoPro Hero4 Black ) :
Kimi moves into his grid slot :
Hulkenberg suffered a power unit failure and tried to limp to the grid for the start of the race. However his engine gave up the ghost on the grid. As a result, the start had to be abandoned for another Formation Lap
2nd Formation Lap :
2nd Formation Lap Video Link :
Mechanics rolling Hulkenberg from the grid back to the pits ( Video Link ) :
Video Link for the Start of the Belgian Grand Prix ( GoPro Hero4 Black ) :
Video Link for the Start of the Belgian Grand Prix ( Sony HX400V ) :
Video Link for Lap 1 of the Belgian Grand Prix ( Sony HX400V ) :
Video Link for Lap 2 of the Belgian Grand Prix ( Sony HX400V ) :
Shots from the Grand Prix :
Scuderia Ferrari F1 during the race :
Daniel Ricciardo suffers a retirement and brings out the safety car period :
Mechanics moving Ricciardo's car to safety :
Shots after the Race Restart :
Scuderia Ferrari after the Race Restart :
Mark Sutton the famous photographer busy at his work. Daniel Ricciardo returns to the pit wall to monitor progress of his team mate :
Chequered Flag :
Video Link for the Chequered Flag :
Lewis Hamilton took victory from Nico Rosberg and Romain Grosjean. Sebastian Vettel looked set for a 3rd place finish but a tyre blow out just after Eau Rouge on the penultimate lap brought about his retirement. Kimi battled his way to P7. It was nice to see him finish the race after the disaster at Austria.
Cars returning to Parc Ferme ( Video Link ) :
Track Marshalls taking Daniel Ricciardo's stricken car to safety after the race :
Track Invasion. Love Europe for this!
The Podium Finishers ( Video Link ) :
Podium Interviews underway :
Video Link :
Sky Sports F1 Crew :
Post Race Interviews by various drivers :
Track full of Fans!
Some more photos of Fans on Track :
Fans of the Iceman and they weren't less in number :
Its always nice to have a chair next to the track and who doesn't love superheroes and minions for company :
Panaromic Photos :
Mechanics wrapping up to head to Italy :
The Hosts as the Scuderia Ferrari F1 Club :
The gate was open and the fans had track access!
A Selfie with the Shell Logo!
Relaxing at the La Source Hairpin :
Time to put on the Ponchos as the rain beats down!
Final Shots from Trackside :
The heavy traffic and the inability of my transfer service to make it
to the circuit for the return pickup on Sunday meant that I had to meet
it in a new place in the track vicinity. Radisson Blu in Spa was the meeting point. I was switching cars when I spotted Kimi Raikkonen in the Hotel Lobby and rushed to get a quick photo with him.
Barring the Rain at the end of the weekend and the loss of a podium for Scuderia Ferrari, it was a brilliant 2015 Belgian Grand Prix.
Spa Francorchamps, nestled in the beautiful Ardennes mountains is a must visit for every F1 Fanatic! Breathtaking views!
I was really happy to see Lotus F1 return to the Podium with Romain Grosjean. Refreshed memories of the 2013 Indian Grand Prix.
Edge Global Events were professional in arranging everything for the weekend and making it a memorable one.
The GoPro Hero4 Black with the Smart Remote and the LCD BacPac was a brilliant piece of equipment and I learnt the lesson of removing it from the waterproof case if I wanted good audio from a distance.
The Sony HX400V lived upto its reputation of being a brilliant camera with a mega super zoom! Captured Cars in its frame with relative ease.
Finally a Big Thank you to the Ferrari F1 Club Hosts and More Importantly Scuderia Ferrari F1 for hosting me throughout the weekend and being so gracious!
This might be the last of the Paddock Club Diaries for 2015. The Diaries might return this year, if not 2016 will be better I promise!
Thank you to YOU too for all the support shown to me.
Flying Diaries have some updates coming! SOON!
God Bless you all!!