Aug 22 2011
In about a month’s time every speed freak in the world’s focus will be on Singapore for the one and only Formula One Night Race. Now in its fourth year, the event takes place September 23 to 25 with downtown Singapore shutting down to create a street circuit that passes local landmarks like the Singapore Flyer and Esplanade Theatre. If you’re in Singapore during this time, the race is almost unavoidable.
To answer the most obvious question – yes, tickets are still available. Three-day passes range from S$298 for a spot in the Bay Grandstand to S$4,066 for a VIP box. A more affordable option is the walkabout tickets which can be purchased for individual days. Prices are S$38 for Friday warm-up races, S$118 for Saturday qualifying, S$148 for the big race on Sunday, or S$198 for all three days. As the name suggests, you have to watch the race standing. Tickets can be purchased through the official Singapore F1 website.
Another option is to check online classifieds used by Singaporeans like Craigslist and Gumtree. Many people bought tickets in advance, are unable to use then, and are selling them slightly below cost. To experience the Formula 1 without paying a cent your best option is to be at Marina Square mall. You’ll certainly hear the F1 cars as they speed by and should be able to catch a glimpse from the outdoor stairwells and pedestrian overpasses if you can work your way to the front of the crowd.
Even if you have no interest in seeing the race, if you’ll be in Singapore on the race weekend you will likely be affected. First, Singapore’s already too expensive hotels hike their prices even higher. This is especially true of hotels along the circuit, like the Swissôtel Stamford, where a room with a race view costs more than S$1,000. Second, bus routes through downtown Singapore will be diverted during race weekend. On the other hand, the MRT will not be affected and operation hours will likely be extended – last year it ran until 01:00 on race weekend.
All three days of the Singapore Formula One race will be broadcast locally on Channel 5, with bars across the city showing the race on big screen TVs.
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