F1: Friday

Those blasted Formula cars are fast. I really had to work to get some good photos to show you guys. It’s funny how you can tell the difference between classes of cars based on the ease with which you can capture them with your camera. After the first F1 practice, the Ferrari Challenge cars held a practice session…and they were SO MUCH EASIER to photograph. I guess that’s my very technical measuring device.

F1 practice

 

F1 practice 2

 

F1 practice 3

 

F1 practice 4

I spent today hiking around the circuit, mainly the back stretch along Turns 2-6, experimenting with different vantage points for observing and photographing. There really isn’t a bad seat in the house at COTA – it’s just a matter of how far you’re willing to trek. Uphill.

For being limited to practice runs, the day was fairly eventful. The first practice session was delayed because of fog (what??? Texas weather = bizarre), then red-flagged because of a missing medical helicopter (again, what???). The guys finally got out there, but for a limited time. One interesting thing to note about this session – Caterham allowed one of its up and coming test drivers, Alexander Rossi, to drive. Rossi was the only American on the track (indeed, there are no American F1 drivers), and a lot of people hope that he will be bumped up, either by Caterham or another team. Too bad his practice session was abbreviated, but the home crowd was proud.

Ferrari Challenge is also here this weekend, as one of the support races, and they had two practice sessions today as well. Naturally (am I stereotyping?), there were spinouts and crashes. Oh, Ferrari drivers. Please note that these are “gentleman drivers,” meaning they have enough cash to pony up for the race car, crew, etc. for this racing series. And, presumably, enough cash to fix a Ferrari that crashes into a wall of tires at speed, crunching and/or shearing off a lot o’ stuff. Special.

Then we had a little visit from some vintage Formula cars, many of which I recognized from the vintage racing weekend not long ago. Nice to see them again.

Here’s a glimpse of the day that was:

Formula 1 Practice

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View from my seat. Which is pretty cool, since Sebastian Vettel has been the hottest thing in F1 for the past four years.

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Lotus in foreground!

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Lotus again!

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Caterham in green

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Ferrari

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Nico Rosberg, for Mercedes AMG Petronas

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Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG Petronas

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One of the Red Bulls – either Vettel or Webber

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Ferrari Challenge Practice

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Yeah, that’s purple. And glittery.

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Fascinating.

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And Ferrari leaves the picture…

More tomorrow, race fans!

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