Lewis Hamilton Jenson Button Vitaly Petrov Nick Heidfeld Daniel Ricciardo Mark Webber

With the teams and drivers flocking to Melbourne for this weekend’s season-opening race, Australian fans already in town will have plenty of opportunities to spot their heroes as they get on with some pre-race sponsorship commitments tomorrow.

Here’s a taster of who’s about and where you need to head…

Australian fans will be keen to get up close and personal with their local heroes, Mark Webber and Daniel Ricciardo, during the festivities, and the pair will be hosting a media breakfast between 9:30 and 10:30am at the Sandbar Beach Cafe at Middle Park this morning.

In typical Aussie fashion, the breakfast will be barbeque-style, with Webber cooking on no less than a – you guessed it – a Weber barbeque!

Webber’s team-mate Sebastian Vettel will be taking a trip to the Gippsland area of Monomeith – about an hour from Melbourne – to try his hand at farming in the afternoon.

Ferrari fans might be able to catch a glimpse of Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa this afternoon, as the pair will pay a visit to the Albert Park Circuit to meet with the Grand Prix’s 2011 ambassador, Ashley Hart.

For the McLaren fans, Lewis Hamilton has offered an open call for anyone interested in going on a run with him in the late morning. As part of a tie-in with team sponsor Reebok, Hamilton has called upon his fans to meet him at Melbourne’s South Wharf at 11:00am.

At the same time as Lewis’ running adventures, the Renault F1 pair of Nick Heidfeld and Vitaly Petrov will get a crash course in Australian Rules Football from the Hawthorn team’s giants, Buddy Franklin and Josh Gibson, at the home of AFL, the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

At just 163cm tall, Heidfeld is one of the shortest drivers on the grid, and the German will have his work cut out for him matched against Buddy Franklin, who is over a foot taller!

The Hawthorn footballers will teach Heidfeld and Petrov some of the sport’s techniques before the AFL squad heads to Adelaide for their opening-round clash against the Adelaide Crows on Saturday night, while the F1 drivers take to the Albert Park circuit for their own season-opener.

And then tonight, Jenson Button will be attending a party honouring Hugo Boss’ 30-year partnership with McLaren – the longest commercial partnership in the sport’s history. The function will occur at Hugo Boss’ Chadstone Shopping Centre store, where Button is expected to appear sometime between 6:30 and 7:00pm.

If you’re in Melbourne and you take any F1-related photos you’d like to share, please email them to us!

[Images via AUTOSPORT, Flickr, LAT and Sutton Images]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.

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