Things are a lot different on Day Two of the Australian Grand Prix.
Thursday we watched, from our little media alcove in the garage, the Caterham guys having a surprisingly relaxed time of it all. There were some jokes and fun with a leaf blower, and later, even talk of where to grab a few drinks last night.
Yesterday, it was all business, in all the garages.
Thanks to Lotus and Microsoft, I walked Pit Lane, something I’ve wanted to do since I could remember wanting to do anything.
The journey actually began above Pit Lane where Lotus woos its supporters, right above the garage.
Fine dining rarely gets noisier or more chaotic than this, which is a typical 36-second grab:
When our moment came to get down amongst it, we collected yet another admission tag. I’m getting weighed down with tags. The pink one is impressively metal.
They let a surprising amount of people through Pit Lane. I still felt special.
You know you’re in a different world when you turn around and Jackie Stewart is right there. And his amazing pants.
I could have stood here all day. It’s impossible not to make all the tired old surgery analogies when the mechanics really are wearing rubber elbow-length gloves.
This is interesting – an F1 team giving exposure away. Lotus support this not-for-profit charity, which has Jude Law as its benefactor. He wasn’t here, but he’ll be hanging out in the garage at Monaco, apparently.
The home town hero.
Every team has eight or ten of these seats trackside, from where they monitor every aspect of the cars’ performance.
Finally, I’ve held a real one. And it’s exactly like what you’d play PC games with, except $15,000 more expensive. They’re allowed two per car, per race.
It’s not just the cars that are impressive. The RAAF Roulettes made some spectacular overhead passes while we were there:
At the end, the swankiest toilets. I waited for someone to recline with a cushion for a pic, but it started to feel creepy.