If you follow me on Twitter, you *may* have noticed that I like Formula 1. A lot. You will be inundated with my obsessive tweeting every Formula 1 weekend which range from me frantically trying to find out when the race will be put on catch up to declaring my love for Jenson Button. I’ve not been a motorsport fan for very long – compared to some of my lovely F1 friends I’ve met who have been dedicated fans since they were little – in actual fact, it’s been no time at all. But, since my first glimpse of F1, when my boyfriend set his alarm for 5:30 in the morning to watch the first practice session in Malaysia last year, my interest has piqued and it hasn’t stopped since. I absolutely adore every aspect of Formula 1 as a sport and have made a huge effort to find out as much as I can about the cars, the teams and drivers and the history of this incredibly exciting, intimidating and captivating sport. And this year, I experienced my very first event! Which will hopefully be the first of many.
My boyfriend and I impulsively nabbed ourselves some last minute tickets to the Formula 1 mid-season test at the Silverstone circuit in Northamptonshire, which took place a week after the last race of the first half of the season, before the teams broke up for their summer holidays if you will. The tickets were just £15 for the 2 days of testing – which lasted from 9 in the morning until 6 in the evening which was an absolute steal of a price for how much you’re getting. We decided to stay overnight in a hotel too and make the most of the two days we were there.
The whole two days were so laid-back and relaxing – for a motorsport fan, like myself, who hasn’t been to an event but wants to dip their toes in, I would 100% recommend a testing session where the atmosphere is low-key and you can basically mill around and do what you want. There were 3 major grandstands open for us to sit in which were located on the start finish straight and the first and last corners of the track. As well as plenty of floor area if you want to get down nice and close to the cars as they fly past you. And although we didn’t buy anything, there were plenty of food and drink stalls open which catered for just about everyone.
We experienced the session from everywhere we possibly could: we sat in all 3 grandstands, found some really great spots to stand in on the grass where the cars were just metres away from you as they came hammering down the straight and I took as many photos as I could (despite the fact my camera died on the first day!) I absolutely loved every single second of being at Silverstone. For an F1 fan, it was quite overwhelming but in a completely brilliant way. The atmosphere and being surrounded by so many like-minded people and particularly seeing these beautiful cars which I’ve only ever previously seen from the comfort of my bedroom in real life, being driven by these amazing athletes and being in the same vicinity as them. I will remember the feeling I got when the first car came out of their garage on the Tuesday morning, right on schedule at 9 o’clock for a very, very long time (the Williams driven by Alex Lynn).
Having gone to Silverstone, it has only increased my love for the sport even more and most of all, I think, has made me appreciate it even more. I look at the drivers, the circuits and the cars a lot more differently now I’ve been there and witnessed a little piece of the Formula 1 life and history myself.