Nice bit of racing

Trip Start Mar 01, 2006
Trip End Jul 09, 2006

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Flag of Australia  ,
Monday, April 3, 2006

We finally managed to get some sleep at around 11pm, so we were a bit annoyed that the tablets didn't have a bigger effect on us. I put the alarm on my phone on for 5:45, because we would be docking in Melbourne at 7am, and we wanted to shower and have breakfast before then.

I entered BIG PLANK status at this point, because I forgot to put the clock back on my phone, so it was actually 4:45. We only realised half way through breakfast & Thom was not a happy bunny - neither was I, but I tried to cover up & told him that I meant to wake us up that early. He didn't believe me, but never mind.

Breakfast was pretty rank to be perfectly honest & we both got the post-airline-meal nausea we usually get, but food is food & it has to be eaten, especially when we were going to watch our first ever F1 race!!

We arrived back at the Nunnery at about 8am & it felt as if we'd never been away. Quickly dumped our bags & headed for the tram to take us straight to Albert Park. We must have been there before 10am, but it was already packed & so we couldn't get on the hill I wanted to be on, unless we didn't want to see anything, so we went a little bit further up the track, just before Turn 9 (won't mean anything to most people!!) & got a pretty fantastic view of the whole corner.

The atmosphere was electric: we could feel the tension building after every support race, as they counted down the time until the race was about to start. When we saw and heard an F1 car for the first time it was magical. The sound of the engines is like nothing I've ever heard before - it was unbelievably loud! And the speed they could go round the corner - don't think we'll try it in our Nissan - might end up a bit killed.

The race itself was over before we knew it - We could tell Alonso was so much faster than the rest of the field. Raikkonen was quick, but no real match for him. The corner we were at was the one where Klien crashed. We were stood 10yards away from that & it was really scary to hear his car thud against the concrete barrier, then a second later, to see 2 of his tyres flying through the air. Reminded me of Villeneuve's crash there in 2000 where a marshall was killed, but luckily safety has improved a lot since then.

At the end of the race, once the safety car had gone past, everyone poured onto the track to celebrate the end of the race, and to see what bits of crashed cars they could salvage to sell on ebay. Unfortunately there was nothing left once we got there apart from a couple of polystyrene blocks, which wouldn't really have fitted in our bags, so we wandered round the rest of the track. We even managed to get down the pit straight, and got some really good shots of the mechanics working, taking everything down, ready to fly back to the UK later that night.

We were completely exhausted after that, so once back at the Nunnery, we went for a Hail Mary next door & we're both asleep by 9:30!
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