We were greeted at the circuit by a fairly mild morning (by Malaysian standards) at the Sepang Circuit where the air temperature was 30 degrees.
Here in the paddock, there is still a sense of anxiety amongst the teams given Kimi Raikkonen’s victory just 5 days ago is still regarded by many as a surprise. The Malaysian Grand Prix is set to provide further insight into the pecking order amongst the teams and drivers.
For the lucky few that are able to access the Formula 1 paddock, it is a chance to see another side to the sport we all love. As is the case everywhere in Malaysia, the city is stinkin’ hot, the circuit is stinkin’ hot and, yep you guessed it, the Formula 1 paddock is stinkin’ hot.
This fact confines many of the teams and drivers to the pit garages and the hospitality suites at the rear of the paddock as everyone dives for the comfort of air conditioned buildings. This takes away a little of the atmosphere that is experienced in other paddocks; however the experience is magnificent nonetheless.
Ferrari offered lunch to the media today (and I was very happy to fill my guts with some of the best pasta I’ve ever tasted). It is an offering of Ferrari at most Grand Prix weekends during the season and the experience was well worth the wait in line. We met a number of journalists and photographers during the lunch who all showed an interest in Richards F1.
Ferrari’s attention to detail is often noted by those in the media, it such detail was evident during the lunch with the Ferrari team logo printed not only on the napkins, but also on the packets of sugar used to make tea and coffee.
Some other notable occurrences:
Christian Horner was spotted chatting with Helmut Marko (perhaps about Mark Webber’s future)
Romain Grosjean looked relaxed walking through the paddock greeting friends and acquaintances as he prepared for the Friday practice sessions
Susie Wolff in the paddock and was seen having a chat with Ben Edwards of the BBC
A number of former F1 drivers are present in the paddock this weekend, including Alex Yoong, Mika Salo, Franck Montagny, Damon Hill, Alexander Wurz, Jackie Stewart, Heikki Kovalainen and Jerome d’Ambrosio.
Ben and I had a chat with Sky Sports Ted Kravitz about his recent holiday to Tasmania, and why he brought up ‘Tasmanian weather’ to Sam Michael in a recent interview during last weekends F1 coverage