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  1. #11
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    I'm really enjoying the "play-by-play" reporting as well !

    Keep it up .

  2. #12
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    Alright Bawan, perhaps theres something useful in it to anyone visiting another year - and an evening diary is a nice thing to do. As now. Even if the rain stopped before the 2nd training itīs pouring now instead. We had a very warm and sunny afternoon today and not that thunderstorm they talked about yesterday. Thunder starts right now and it might be a very wet qualification tomorrow instead.

    Learnings and joys of today:

    Skipped the expensive shuttle-depending-parkings and found free parking some kilometer from an entrance in the mixed and quite small quarters east of the track. Not hard at all today. Will go for that area tomorrow as well. If I arrive early it might be possible to find a spot there even on racing sunday. But if so I'll arrive very early- We'll see.

    To get in is a kind of hustle when it comes to what is allowed and not. Passed one only-staff-entrance that directed me to a public one. They told me I wouldn't be allowed to bring my umbrella so I left it in their care. They told me my visible monopoid (a one-legged photo tripoid) could be asked about but would be ok if I told them what it was. Went on to the public entrance.

    Now opposite info. An umbrella was ok but the monopod was a dangerous thing. I tried all arguments and they called for a very harsh guy carring a small machine gun. No, that's not allowed was all he said. Over and over and the kind of guy that never let another person have a last word. Had to leave the monopoid (worth around 50 Euro) with them.

    To sum up those itemsI met many people inside carring umbrellas. I met at least three guys with tripoids. Asked one of them how he got that in and he said he was denied at one gate and allowed at another. So what is and isn't is not that easy to find out and plan for.

    The obvious miss MANY person did was bringing bottles and cans of beverage. A considerable pile of dropped bottles and cans at the enterance. I had a small opened bottle of water I was drinking while I was walking. But had to leave the cap to the guys at the gates. Safety? Don't know. Some info I got before was that there was drinking-water-fountains everywhere. Haven't seen them yet. Perhaps racingday? Otherwise it seems more like buying beverage from the vendors is the task here. Yes, I can smack my small soft water bottle in someones head but picking up a piece of wood in the forrest would do more harm as a weapon

    A lot of walking it is. Adding the walk from and to the car I estimated around 16 kms today . Had quite nice legs before and will end up as an athlet .

    So the racing of today. Skipped first pass and started of from camping 30km north around 11.30. At 13 hours I took a seat at the first chikane. Very reasonable. Prato tickets is valid everywhere, even on seats, during friday. Tomorrow I'm more restricted. Therefore I brought my big lens today (missed the monopod) and to be used from a good seat right at the chikane. But honestly it's hard to take (good) pics on running racing cars. Double fences everywhere you're at level with track. From my high spot I was I was able to catch some of the cars. With 'normal' cameras and phone cameras you can allways get some overview pics but perhaps not the most exciting ones. With my 300mm lens though I get a bit TOO close so the task was to get a fast moving car inside the display - and the cars length is about the full horisontal display - and a sharpness. When you press the shutter the car has already passed so you have to train and find the right timing. I hope some of the many shots I did was alright. Tomorrow and racing day I will just use a wide angle lens for environment and a 135mm portrait lens to cars on track. Guess I have to forget about the fences.

    The sound of racing F1 cars! Wow. As soon as I was out of the car about 1500 m from the track it was no doubt. Set off in the direction of the angry wasps. Beside track ear-plugs make sense if you care about your hearing. The speed is breath taking. Standing beside on a spot at straight a full might be a bit frustrating I guess. Better to find a place where they have to lift of, breaking and accelerate in my opinion.

    Don't ask me about this days training when it comes to the outcome!?! There's plenty of big screens showing the same pics I see on TV BUT an italian speaker (yes I could hear names of drivers but that's it) and worse, NOT the lap times as I'm used to. Had to check with the web when I got home. Mercedes was fast - and so where all the other cars from my view. Even so - could live with that .

    As I said I walked around a bit- Thursday I was in pit lane, main straight and Parabolica. Today first chikane, a bit of Curva Grande and both Lesmos. It's quite a walk in the woods/park to get to that up-in-the-corner area.

    After 2nd training it was F2 qualification. Two Red flags and pauses, but nothing of that was from "my" sections. Not an ovbious differance in how you got impression of speed when the cars passes so fast. Even the following Porches (they races after the F2s). It was more of a convincing feeling of more power from the F1s,

    It was enough for me and at 18 I walked my way back to the car, bought a sixpac water from a store and drank 1 liter at spot and drove home to my small but very nice camping. To be at the track camping might be good for many reasons but it's also nice to live at a lake with the mountains behind, having an evening swim in a pool, a genuine italina pizza and a beer. And a macciato to the tent where I'm sitting right now. The rain continues and seem to stay...

    Hope you enjoyed even if it's a bit to read . If I miss it tomorrow evening I have my reasons. If so I do a bit re-capturing afterwards...

    Good Night!

  3. Likes: drive (2nd September 2017)
  4. #13
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    Thanks MickeK for these posts, enjoy!

  5. #14
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    The weather looks pretty unpleasant this morning, I hope you've been able to stay dry.

    All those daft "security" rules suck pretty badly. For the water I guess the thing to do tomorrow will be to take one of your store-bought bottles of water, plus the cap from one of the others in your pocket so you can replace it when they confiscate the cap off the bottle!

  6. #15
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    MickeK , we're loving these posts !
    No worries about boring us .

    It's like being there with you .

    Interesting that you mention the sound .
    Obviously , the "angry wasps" must still sound impressive if you're saying it drew you towards them .

    I remember waking up to the sound of the V10 alarm clock at my campsite at Indy in 2000 .
    But , the thought that I would wear earplugs only lasted for the first lap as the experience of that rumble was crazy cool .

    AndyL has offered you a business opportunity in a way , if you think about it .
    Take a good pocketful of caps off the most popular water bottles and you might just have a good commodity to sell inside the gates .
    You might have been able to trade some for a mono or tripod , or even an umbrella today !
    Well , maybe not , but maybe a smile from a nice Italian girl .

    Have fun , and I hope we see a great race tomorrow .

  7. #16
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    Hi all!



    Communications breakdown (you know that Zep-song?) was a result of keyboard problems. A couple of keys didn't generate chars. Sorry to break the illusion of 'beeing there' by this, but I just did not have the patience to write stories with the screen keyboard . Guess the laptop keyboard didn't like all the rain... And it rained for sure.

    Home again (did Venice and Vienne on my way back) and will try to sum my Monza experience up somehow. Even if the race is history by now. Perhaps my it might be useful for someone sometime .

    All forecasts prepared us for a wet friday. As you already know that wasn't the case. Skies opened saturday instead. In fact it started late friday night and went on more or less for 24 hours! Just couldn't believe it. Couldn't bring my big lens as planned and risk the health of my photo equipment. Stayed in the tent to the last moment and came to the track some hour before Q1. No parking problems close to the track this day! Still raining. At Parabolica, just before the main straight, there are some 100 stands for Prato ticket. Found a spot there at the fence, very close to where the cars pass when going to the pits. To prepare the stress on race day my plan was to find me a good spot to aim for on sunday.

    Dispite the wetness it was intersting to see the cars racing in those conditions but it lasted until the red flag a couple of minutes in. From that 15 minutes delays til the actual start more than three hours later!!! You have to be stubbard and patient and stay put. All those hours hanging at the fence with a cheap rain cap covering me. Now and then checking the weather conditions. Just as we thought it would stop it increased again. I guess you had a better time at home - if you ever lasted til the start of Q1 around 17pm. Well, at least there was no more water left in the skies so we had a very warm and sunny sunday instead. If you stayed at the TV it was quite a dramatic Q3, more excitement in that than in the actual race perhaps . It was chilly and wet and reasons to expect cancelled Q - but at last you get home (to a tent) and at last (in the evening) the rain stops.

    Sunday was warm and sunny. The alarm was set to 5.30 am as I was adviced to be at track 8.00 to be able to get that spot for the day. Totally crazy morning as I hadn't checked with the camping gates. Naturally they where closed at this early hour and the rest of the camp seemed to sleep. Except from a couple of dutch fans that saved me there. Then the next backlash as I just checked the camera when I was on my way. Had forgot to put the charged battery in!!! Hesitated there for a while. But I just couldn't bare not beong able to take photos on race day so I turned. Was around 15 km to get back, climb over the camping fence to get the battery and then a departure around an hour later than planned... I can laugh at it now, but it wasn't the best of mornings.

    So I was quite happy that despite a late arrival around 9 there was a free spot where I was during the Q. Found an english father and son and we could help each other the rest of the day to hold our reservations. Well, you have to eat and leak even at the races. The show was F3-race, F2-race, Porsche-race and then a different F1 drivers presentation. Not the usual truck driving a lap. Instead a lot of old sportscars (many Ferraris), one for each driver. Really nice. Then a lot of long legged ladies with signs walked by. Then the race started... Not of any interest to inform you around that. It was rather obvious to us that the Mercedes was too fast for anyone else. A lot of Italians (you have to be there to understand the Ferrari religion) changed mood from happy to less. I can imagine what would be the case with a red car in front.

    From my spot it was easy to get to the tribune after the race. The guards tried to stop those trying to jump before all cars was back in the pits... ...but soon enough it was just to run out on the track and run to get a new spot. Vettel was celebrated as a winner. Lots of crazy fans. I was under the big Ferrari tifo flag.

    A great weekend if I try to forget the wet hours. To be there, feel the athmosphere, see all parts of the track, climb on the old bankings and all. Got a lot of photos to edit and let's see if I later can publish some here.

    Did I forget anything? Just ask. I almost forgot what my orignial posting was about. The task of where to park and all that. I didn't know anything about the surroundings before and found it more safe to go for the official parkings with shuttles - even if it seemed a bit time consuming. Didn't that at all. First day I just checked where one of those parkings was situated. Thursday I parked at the track camping for 10 Euros. Friday I checked the backstreets directly west to the track. No problems to find a free parking and walk 1 km. Took the same spot saturday (but the rain stopped many from going there) and even on sunday (despite my later arrival) I could park there around 8.30. So a total parking fee of 10 Euros. But you have to be on time. On race day the traffic was heavy.

    One thing to say though is that a lot of traffic is re-arranged racing day and a lot of streets closed. Many small streets and a lot of small rondellas before you're close to the track and if you come late I guess you'll spend a lot of time in your own car.


    So this was my final report, delayed with a couple of weeks but did at least give you the last details. Post any questions if you have any.
    Last edited by MickeK; Yesterday at 14:33.

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