Saturday on a Grand Prix weekend features the last Free Practice Session, FP3 and Qualifying for F1. Its shortly followed by the Feature Race in F2. This was a Saturday that we can never forget..
An early start to the day helped us beat some traffic to the track.
Enroute to the Circuit from Hasselt :
We were also in time for the Saturday Morning Pit Lane Walk.
Shots from the Pit Lane Walk :
The Alfa Romeo Racing F1 Team Garage :
Kimi Raikkonen's Alfa Romeo being Fired up before FP3 ( Video Link ) :
A beautiful morning in the Paddock :
Healthy Breakfasts anyone?
It was then time for Free Practice 3 and I found a nice place to shoot some pictures of cars going up Raidillon :
I made my way back to Turn 1 ( La Source ) and met Porsche Carrera Cup Drivers on the way while going through the Support Race Paddock.
Dylan Pereira, Supercup Porsche Carrera Cup Racing Driver :
Some more shots of the cars coming out of La Source Hairpin :
Alfa Romeo Racing F1 Team during FP3 :
Charles Leclerc was fastest in FP3 from Sebastian Vettel and Valtteri Bottas. Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi were P8 and P9 respectively.
A Quick Lunch in the Motorhome :
Timo Glock, Ex-F1 and DTM Racer :
The Motorhome, a busy place during Lunch :
Heikki Kulta of Finnish Press :
It was also time for the 2nd Pit Lane walk of the day.
The Alfa Romeo Racing F1 Team Garage!
I headed out to the La Source hairpin stand after the Pit Lane Walk to meet my friend and long time Kimi Supporter Zakria!
Qualifying got underway soon after. Shots from Q1 :
Alfa Romeo Racing F1 Team during Q1 :
Charles Leclerc was the fastest in Q1 from Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen. Both the Alfas made it into Q2!
Shots from Q2 :
Antonio Giovinazzi's car suffered a mechanical failure in Q2 and couldn't set a time. He would eventually start the race in P18 after serving the penalties incurred for the parts change. Charles Leclerc was the fastest from Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton. Kimi Raikkonen made it into Q3.
Shots from Q3 :
Charles Leclerc took Pole from Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton. Kimi Raikkonen qualified a commendable P8 ( effective P6 after Ricciardo's and Hulkenberg's penalties ).
Ferrari were ecstatic after locking out the front row!
Post Qualifying celebrations :
Taking the Cars to Parc-Ferme :
I made it back to the paddock to unwind for a bit before heading home.
Mark Webber and David Coulthard, highly successful Racers in F1 and beyond :
Brett Arnall, Mark Arnall's brother and my friend Kimi Raikkonen fan Jane Bleach :
During the F2 Feature Race, a massive crash happened just after Raidillon. Young Drivers Anthoine Hubert and Juan Manuel Correa were involved in the incident. The Race was red-flagged and later cancelled. Both were rushed to the Medical Centre.
Inspite of their best efforts, Anthoine Hubert didn't make it. We were shocked and shaken after hearing the news. True Motorsports is dangerous but a talent who was only 21 was taken away from us, in the cruelest way possible. Words fall short to describe the mood in the Paddock. Everyone rallied around the near and dear ones of this Renault Program young driver. It once again showed how closed knit the Racing Community. Juan is still under treatment and after a couple of critical surgeries is on a rough road to recovery. All of us shed tears, all of us were one...all of us..
As we head back to Hasselt, our hearts were heavy, our senses numb, we still didn't want to believe this to be true..but such is life..
This incident reminded us that racers sacrifice their all to live their dreams, to race, to enthrall, to entertain, to give us memories that will be etched in the hearts of us fans forever and yet, all it takes is a moment, one instance to end it all. This Sport unites us..as one big family..fans and racers alike..we race as one, we win as one....and in the times of mourning we mourn as one..There is an old saying "life goes on"..for Anthoine's Family, life would never be the same again..
May his soul rest in peace..
The legacy of Anthoine Hubert lives on..
The Sunday experience follows next..