TIMELINE: 10 years of Singapore Grand Prix
SINGAPORE – Like the Supertrees at Gardens by the Bay and the famous ship-like Skypark on top of Marina Bay Sands, the Singapore Grand PrixTM has become one of the markers that define the Lion City.
The first street circuit race in Asia, the Singapore Grand PrixTM has become as popular as its counterparts around the world.
Every year, the race is made more exciting with lane adjustments, track configuration changes, and bigger local and international acts off-track. This year, the 2017 FORMULA 1 SINGAPORE AIRLINES SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX will feature electrifying performances by Calvin Harris, Ariana Grande, The Chainsmokers, OneRepublic, Seal, Duran Duran, George the Poet, Lianne La Havas and more!
With the whole city going full throttle during F1® season, visitors can also look forward to parties, fashion shows, shopping deals, and gastronomic treats outside the circuit. Singapore is also one of the venues closest to Manila, making it easier and more affordable for us to witness a prestigious racing event.
Now that the Singapore Grand PrixTM is celebrating its 10th anniversary, let us look at how it has become one of the most highly anticipated F1® races:
After years of waiting – the Singapore Tourism Board’s first-ever bid was in 1990 – the first street circuit race in Asia and its inaugural night race took place in Marina Bay Street Circuit. More than 300,000 spectators flew to Singapore where The Wailers provided the very first trackside entertainment. The race was both historical and controversial after Renault was accused of ordering one of its drivers, Nelson Piquet Jr., to intentionally crash his car into a wall so his teammate, Fernando Alonso, can go on to score his first ever win in a year.
On its second year, Singapore Grand PrixTM was recognized by the Singapore Experience Awards for its breakthrough contribution to the country’s tourism. McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton had a fairly effortless – but at least not controversial – win after close competitors Nico Rosberg and Sebastian Vettel incurred pit penalties. This year saw the number of entertainment acts grow with the inclusion of international artists like Chaka Khan, Backstreet Boys, and Travis.
First Singapore Grand PrixTM winner, Fernando Alonso, took back the title this year. Reigning winner Lewis Hamilton was put out of the race after contact with competitor Mark Webber damaged his left rear. Lotus’s Heikki Kovalainen, meanwhile, doubled as a firefighter when his car caught fire during his penultimate lap and had to be doused with a fire extinguisher himself. The appearance of Mariah Carey, Missy Elliot, Chris Daughtry, Adam Lambert, and Sean Kingston this year was only a sign that post-race concerts will only get bigger and bigger.
Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel finally won this year’s race after a penalty stopped him in 2009. Vettel also went on to win the World Championship, becoming the youngest double World Champion in Formula OneTM history. This year, Singapore Grand Prix invited local artists from Asia including the Philippines’ very own Charice Pempengco (now Jake Zyrus) and GD&Top and Seungri from South Korea to perform alongside Shakira, Linkin Park, Boy George, Shaggy and Rick Astley.
Sebastian Vettel wins again this year after Mercedes veteran Lewis Hamilton’s gearbox failed and had to pull over. The race ended with a bang – a loud echo from the fireworks – and short of one lap after it reached the two-hour time limit. Vettel also took home the World Championship for the second time, earning global respect for the Singapore Grand PrixTM. Katy Perry and Maroon 5 headlined this year’s post-race concert featuring other performers like Taiwan artist, Jay Chou, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, Pretenders, Bananarama, and The Proclaimers.
Despite some conspiracy theories – that it was the car and not the driver – that led to his third straight win, it was no question that it’s Sebastian Vettel’s working when he won with a 32-second margin over Fernando Alonso. He proved it when he also went on to secure his third consecutive World Championship. Together with celebrity attendees like David Beckham, visitors went wild over the performances by hotshot artists including Rihanna, The Killers, Justin Bieber, Tom Jones, and K-pop group Big Bang. More than 260,000 spectators went this year, the highest attendance since 2008.
After an unlucky streak, Lewis Hamilton was able to win the Singapore Grand PrixTM for the second time after electronic glitches put his close competitor from Mercedes, Nico Rosberg, out of the race. By reclaiming the World Championship, Hamilton proved his Singapore race victory wasn’t a fluke. The local and international acts this year included Jennifer Lopez, Robbie Williams, Mayday, John Legend, the Philippines’ very own Carlo Castano, and more.
Sebastian Vettel came back for his fourth Singapore Grand PrixTM win this year but now as a driver of Ferrari. 2015 also marks the third-highest attendance since 2008 and 2013 with over 260,000 spectators flocking to the sidelines for the three-day event. Mercedes’s struggle during the Singapore race was apparent after Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg only placed 5th and 6th. Meanwhile, Bon Jovi, Maroon 5, and Pharrell Williams headlined the local and international acts in the post-race concerts.
Mercedes recovered this year after Nico Rosberg emerged as the winner and earned his first Singapore Grand Prix win. His teammate Lewis Hamilton trailed 8 seconds behind, placing third. Off-track, the star-studded entertainment lineup included Kylie Minogue, Queen + Adam Lambert, Imagine Dragons, Bastille, Halsey, Pentatonix, and more.
With Lewis Hamilton winning the recently concluded British Grand Prix, all eyes will be on the Mercedes driver come September. On top of the FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPTM, catch support races, Ferrari Challenge Asia Pacific and Porsche Carrera Cup Asia, at the 2017 FORMULA 1 SINGAPORE AIRLINES SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX this 15 - 17 September.
Off-track, entertainment will feature Calvin Harris, Ariana Grande, The Chainsmokers, OneRepublic, Seal, Duran Duran, George the Poet, Lianne La Havas, and more. Visitors are also in a for a more exciting nightlife scene as Singapore Pub Crawl celebrates the 10th anniversary of Singapore Grand Prix. Apart from race-themed venues, race enthusiasts will get to participate in fun trivia and games, collect race maps and souvenirs.
If you want to experience the frills and thrill of the 2017 FORMULA 1 SINGAPORE AIRLINES SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX season, book your tickets now at www.singaporegp.sg and authorized ticketing agents, or call +65 6738 6738.
For more information on other off-circuit entertainment and the exciting experiences that await you in Singapore, check out www.visitsingapore.com/ph. – Rappler.com