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Old 15th November 2011, 13:26   #1
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Default My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

Hi All


I was a Marshal at India's first ever Grand Prix 2011. I would like to share my experience with you all with some pictures. I will let the pictures do all the talking. Thanks to T-BHP that I had the opportunity to apply for volunteering in the event.


Maximuzz

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Old 15th November 2011, 13:45   #2
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

Very cool indeed. Kudos. I'd never seen those boxes that the cars come packed in with the wheels sticking out before.


I was in Star Stand 2 and I managed some pretty cool shots of the action, but I kept wishing I'd brought a bigger lens.
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Old 15th November 2011, 13:53   #3
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

Yes I too was surprised the packing. It was an awesome sight. More pics to follow.
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Old 15th November 2011, 14:27   #4
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

A few more pics. Many more to follow.
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Old 15th November 2011, 14:58   #5
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

the last batch. Enjoy
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Old 15th November 2011, 18:19   #6
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

Wonderful. Haven't seen any such thing before. Thanks a tonne for sharing these pics. Please keep them coming. Also share with us your marshaling experience, right from start till the race end & beyond.
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Old 15th November 2011, 18:57   #7
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

Really nice pictures there! Thanks for sharing your experience. Could you post those pictures of the XK-R, Maser GT and quattroporte in the Delhi imports thread? Quite a rare find those!
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Old 15th November 2011, 19:20   #8
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

Quote:
Originally Posted by theragingbull View Post
Could you post those pictures of the XK-R, Maser GT and quattroporte in the Delhi imports thread? Quite a rare find those!
I ll do that I should have done that in the first place.
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Old 17th November 2011, 11:21   #9
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

A Force India pitstop video coming up soon.
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Old 17th November 2011, 11:41   #10
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.





A detailed account of Marshalling Experiece still to come. Enjoy the Sound of the air gun. Turn up the volume.

Last edited by maximuzz : 17th November 2011 at 11:46. Reason: info added.
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Old 17th November 2011, 13:06   #11
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

My Marshalling Experience at India’s First ever GP 2011.

It all began on the Team BHP website when they had posted in the portal “Want to become a Marshal at the F1 race” in February 2011 that’s when I decided that no what I will not this once in a lifetime chance to go waste.

I registered immediately and then kept a tab on it on the IMMC website. One month passed and no response, two months passed and no response. I started to get worried but then a few pictures of the track started emerging on the TBHP website. A sense of relief set in and I thought to myself “could it really happen in India?”.
And then came an SMS “you have to get to Greater Noida for your Meet” and I was all kinds of excited. I called a friend and asked him if he was interested, he agreed and we both came to Noida for the first Meeting on 9th and 10th September. We were told that the Marshals from Bahrain were coming to India to help us out with the GP, a little sense of relief set in that we will have experienced people also with us. They told us that you need not call the Marshals for training week after week but just a weeks training before the race should suffice. This had always been my dream and I could not believe that I have not only got a chance to see the First ever Indian GP but to be an Integral part of it. I mean that was just an icing on the cake. When we were explained how important a Marshal’s role is, it started to sink in that not only is this going to be fun but it is also going to serious business. We were taken to the track on the second day and divided into various categories and groups and given the tour of the track. MIND you the Track was huge and intimidating. There were little worries whether they would get it completed on time or not, but we Indians get the work done.  We were given a tour of the track and various facilities and basic familiarization of the track. The smoothness of the track is just to die for, I would love to take car there someday and drive it to its limit. Any more smoother and my we would have started slipping on it, its finish was top notch. We clicked a lot of pictures and tried to absorb as much as we could, mind you there was a lot to be learnt as were being told by the Bahranians who had so kindly agreed to come and help us and train us for the Indian GP.

Well the days after that were flying and we were waiting for the final clearance or list to come out and the dates to be decided and as luck had it the GP was taking place, it was FINAL!! I was pumped, now I had just one more thing to worry about “ I being a newly trained Commercial Pilot and still looking for a job was just praying that nothing happen during my training sessions and also the F1 week”, that phase was quite nerve racking.

Things happened side by side but luckily nothing overlapped, the only thing which did was DIWALI, which was not really a problem.. So were called on the 23rd of October to show up and get ready for the training and the tough week which lie ahead of us. Mind you ( a week of training for us but I am sure the organizers and Chiefs had their work cut out, they had to train before us and better than us. Huge amount of respect to them.)
So all my bags were packed and my family informed that no matter what I am going to attend this GP so don’t feel bad that I may not make it for Diwali. 
I got to Delhi on 23rd and stayed the night at my brother’s place in Gurgaon. Come 24th morning I was up at 4 am, took a shower, got ready, said bye to my lovely wife and headed to Greater Noida as the reporting time was 7 am.

Day 1 - Destination – Plumeria Society Greater Noida.

I had a little difficulty finding the place but I reached on time and when I saw the place, a sense of REALITY set in, THIS IS REAL NOT A DREAM. I grabbed a cup of coffee and headed to the registration desk where I was told that it will be done in the evening after training.
We were told to board the buses and headed to the track; it was about 17 kms away from where we were staying. I talked to people on the way and it was so exciting to see that so many people will share the same experience with me, AN Experience of a LIFETIME. I was so kicked, I saw a Father-daughter duo, full families, and even elder people had shown up to get this amazing experience.
And so it started our journey into F1 officially. We entered the track where the pit area begins beneath the Paddock. The sight was nothing short of AWESOME, we could see a line of containers of all the teams lined up on the track and in the pit area. We knew those containers had cars in them, their pit computers, there was nothing much to see but still you just wanted to stare at them and click pictures because all you see were the names of the teams and in a sense that was just enough for us to get that kick.
People were hardly talking we were just too busy looking everywhere gathering what all we could and also side by side listening to our Chief Marshal and his instructions. We started the tour of our track, there were 30 posts if I remember correctly which included of – Flag Posts, Intervention Posts, Chief Posts and finally MPs or Mirror Posts. We kept getting assigned posts along the tour of the track. We were made to run on the GRAVEL TRAP and it was not fun  , extremely hard to run on, the feet just sank in the tiny pieces of stones. The training lasted the whole day, we did not realize that we had walked the entire track and no one was complaining of discomfort. We all just took all the information we could gather.

Day 2 – 25th October and we could start to feel the heat. The anxiety levels were up and today we were going to be joined by the whole team of Bahranian Marshals. We were walking towards our camp site to gather, we saw a group of about 70 – 80 people singing and chanting, waving a white and red colored and beating on a tabla sort of instrument. It was AMAZING to see the kind of energy they and a very surreal moment. We knew they wanted to announce the arrival of the Bahranians.
We all gathered at the camp and sang together with them and hugged and clicked pictures. I guess it was their way of breaking the ICE and also welcoming us to a FORMULA 1 event and I guess tell us the energy required for such an event.
Soon all the fun and games were over and the serious business began of the classification and categorization of our posts. Every post had at least 1 if not 2 Bahrain Marshal to supervise with us. We lined up and sat in the buses and were dropped to the respective posts. I was at Intervention Post 18.1 which is near the South Picnic Stand and between turn 9 and turn 10. ( just before the start of the big U TURN)
We were briefed on the do’s and don’ts. We stood at our post for almost the whole day and got familiar with the area and what safety precautions we need to take and since I had opted to be an Intervention Marshal, our job was to ensure the security of the opening of our post as vehicles could get on and off track from there, to clean the track of any sort of debris and make sure the drain pipe which runs along the track was properly fastened and the nuts and bolts can fly off due to the immense downforce produced by the F1 cars. Also we had to lookout for any sort of oil marks on the track which would be potentially dangerous and cause the car to skid. Another reason to opt for this post was that it was very close to the track about 5ft. Our team was awesome we worked together with each and cooperated which was a relief. At the end of the day was a debriefing and since the next was DIWALI so were told that we would the 26th as a day off and report back early on 27th.

(Coming up- the excited conclusion of my experience at Indian GP 2011)
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Old 18th November 2011, 16:11   #12
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

Wonderful Pics. I was a marshal too, MP23. I got loads of pictures too. Will post once you are done.

A correction

Quote:
We started the tour of our track, there were 30 posts if I remember correctly which included of – Flag Posts, Intervention Posts, Chief Posts and finally MPs or Mirror Posts
Total of 31 Posts Post 0 to Post 30. Only three kinds of Posts MP - Marshal Posts which included Chief Post and Flag Marshals, IO - Intervention Post which included Intervention officer and Intervention Marshals. There were two mirror posts, 22 and 25, which did not have a different name as such.

MASh

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Old 19th November 2011, 20:34   #13
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

And I was IO 18.0...

We recovered the torro rosso, the Williams, Massa's Ferrari....
Have managed to get a few souvenir carbon fibre pieces

Looking forward for next year already!!!!
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Old 20th November 2011, 11:07   #14
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Day 3 after Diwali

27th October we reported at Plumeria early morning and mind you it was a chilly morning .Luckily we were given the jump suits so it was a little better, but as the day progressed the heat got intense and it got pretty hot but we were told to stay hydrated. People from faraway places had stayed on since it was not feasible since we had to report early morning. This just tells us the commitment people made to make this F1 race happen. People left their families just to come to be a part of this event.


Today was an important day, it was the FIA testing day or SHAKEDOWN.
In a shakedown, what happens is that it is a mock drill in which the training of the all the marshals is tested. Like a car would stop and someone would get out of the car and lie on the track indicative of them needing medical attention, another would be a situation in which someone would spill water on the track indicating that there is oil on the track and it needs to be attended to and reported to RACE CONTROL.
The Bahranians told us that today is a day to make mistakes and learn from them so don’t worry about them.
Today was one of the more exciting days since we had been there. All the preparations were made, multiple rounds in various vehicles were made, then came one final and most important round made by the SLS AMG which belongs to BIC, and it was supporting the RED FLAG which was indicative of the track being CLOSED or HOT ie:- the Marshals are the kings now. How? Well our post was to be guarded with our lives now. No one can cross the track, lean against the barriers, photographers are to be kept at bay and not dangerously close no more usage of cell phones and mainly ALL ATTENTION to be paid to the oncoming traffic.

The good thing about our post was that we had a panoramic view of the track we could see the end of the longest straight which would be turn 4 and then 5 and 6 also. 7 and 8 were blind but then 9, 10, 11, 12 then blind at 13 then 14, and finally 15.

The reason why I mentioned all that will be told soon 

The track was HOT/CLOSED, there was a brief calm, and then after sometime we could hear a roar of some sort but did not know what it was. We saw some cars coming towards us at with a ROAR frankly I have never heard before. Tires screeching the ROAR got louder and then they popped out in front of FIA’s own safety and medical cars- the SLS AMG and the C 63 AMG. They were going full throttle and showing us how they should be driven. The sound well what can I say it was just unbelievable. The tires being pushed to their limits, leaving their marks on the track, mind you there was no comparison between both of them, in fact the C63 AMG sounded much better and louder, of our course their catalytic converters had been removed so they were even more louder. The SLS was faster through the corners for obvious reasons but other than that, they both were almost neck and neck. They went around the track for half an hour or so and it was absolutely exciting . Tired but experienced the most exciting motorsport day till now we went back at the end of the day and got debriefed and motivated for tomorrow when the support races and of course we were going to see the F1 cars on the track for the first time.


Day 4 – 28th October

We had to wake up at 4 am and get to the track early as the support races the JK racing Asia Series practice and MRF practice series. All preparations were made and for the first time we were going to see cars we only saw on TV. The Formula 4 car drivers, we were told were going to try to push their cars to the limit as they were all trying to get the cut in the bigger league so they had a higher chance of making mistakes. Also the track was dusty due to construction and slippery due to never been used before. Frankly I thought that they would not be that loud so I did not care to wear my ear plugs. The pit light turned green and we could hear them all the way to our posts when they got out of the pits. They too made a sweet sound and as soon as they passed our post I realized that I had made a mistake not to wear the plugs, so I put them on asap. 

I think it was lap 3 or 4 and then one of the cars coming out of turn 9 lost its rear end and skidded right across us and into our ZONE. Our alert phase was at our peak and we thought this would be our first recovery. We waited for things to settle and confirmation from race control to go in, but ALAS they have a starter in them so he started his car and went on his way. We were a bit disappointed but relieved too, but we realized that turn 9 is going to be a hot spot for cars to lose their rear. Soon the session ended and it was time for the F1 practice session soon.


All checks done but of all the days we were there we saw no dogs but when the F1 cars were about to come out we had a couple of dogs on track. This was disappointing as the media was there and spectators had started pouring in. Eventually the pit light turned green and the F1 cars entered to track for the first time EVER in India. OMG the sound was just too good. My marshal friend told me that they are at least 4 times louder than the Formula 4 cars, and he was right but before we could hear them as soon as Webber came out of turn 9, guess what DOG ON TRACK again. It was really disappointing how they got there in first place, my guess was the loud sounding engines got them disoriented and they got scared. Anyhow a Bolero was sent on track to catch the dog but to our astonishment it outwitted the Bolero and took a sharp turn into the gravel trap which resulted in the Bolero being caught in the TRAP. I don’t know but it was kind of a blessing in disguise because we had not yet seen recovery vehicles on track but within a flash one of them reached the spot and towed it out within seconds. This was a good experience for all of us at the track. Yes, embarrassing but we got the job done.

Once again the pits turned green and the F1 cars were once again roaring on the track and amazing sound of the F1 cars ruled the track. Little did we know that more action was in store for us, after sometime came Alonso in his Scarlett colored car which sounded a little sick and out of turn 9 and into turn 10 he stopped his car due to some engine problem. Another awesome recovery took place in front of our eyes, within seconds.

Soon afterward coming out of turn 9 then into the barrier right in front of us Alguesuari crashed. He was ok, he got out of the car and walked away and one more time we saw some more action but alas we did not get to recover as he was across the track and out of our jurisdiction. The yellow flags were out and the recovery was made without a glitch.

All in all it was an action packed day. It ended with the MRF practice session which was not very auctioned packed but still exciting as a few cars did lose their rear but recovered.



Day 5 – 29th October

We reached the track early and were all pumped up as we could see that turn 9 will be hot once again. It was time for the JK Racing Asia qualifying session, it went well a few cars somehow managed to glide over the gravel trap adjacent to our post, I guess due to the momentum of the car. It was also interesting to see a woman race among the male dominated sport, and she was fast, you could not tell the difference of who is driving what.

It was interesting to see the amount of people who had come to watch the cars in action on 28th and 29th as they were not Race days. Every marshal regardless of what their duty was had made their posts, their own home and respected the integrity of it. It was an amazing feeling to see all these people who had volunteered and were ready to follow instructions, to stand all day under the sun and undergo the all the dust and sweat. Many people told me that their friends including mine were amazed why we all agreed to do it for FREE. It was not FREE we were paid in kind and love of the sound of the F1 cars  that only a motorsport enthusiast could understand.

Yes, when so many people are involved there were a few people who were not happy. Someone I met at the track had come to get the experience so that it would look good in his RESUME. It was a funny thought but I guess it made sense to him. I think out all the people who reached Greater Noida I think 2 -3 people went back for some reason or the other. All in all it was a great event and people learnt from their mistakes. Anyway back to the topic.

Soon the pit light turned green and the F1 cars were roaring on the track, people were clapping shouting holding their ears to the loudness of the cars. That marked the end of the practice sessions and we were in for the MRF Race 1 for the day which also was incident less and lasted for about 30 minutes. Post lunch we were going to have the most exciting part of the day the qualifying session. All was going well until Massa lost his right suspension just before turn 9 and went into the DHL boards at post 18. Once again those guys got all the action as they right in front of us and a successful recovery. I think this was Q3 I believe. A few people did get their Ferrari souvenirs. The session ended and we were waiting for the last race for the day the JK Racing Asia Race 1. The race went well and so the day came to an end. Less than 24 hours left before the start of India’s first ever GP we were given a nice and encouraging debrief. Once again I would like to say that the race would not have gone seamless without the help of the Bahrainians. Training is one thing but having experience of 7 GPs is another. We were sent home early and told to report a little late the next day, properly rested.



30th October – RACE DAY


Today was special for every Indian out there and those who were a part of it will cherish it for the rest of their lives. The heat was building up and so was the anxiety. This was it no more mistakes, not that there were many, NO Retakes, we get one shot to do everything right in the first go as millions of people would be watching how we perform on TV and on track.

We reached the track, cleaned our section of the track, and readied our KERS gloves, fire extinguishers. The track was closed soon and first up was the MRF support Race 2 which was quickly followed by the JK racing Asia Race 2.

It was time for the driver’s parade and we were told to relax and were allowed to pull out our cameras and line up on the track and cheer the F1 Drivers who were going to parade in Classic cars. The maximum cheers happened when people saw Vettel, Schumacher, Karthikeyan, Massa, Sutil and Resta. I was so involved in looking at the drivers that when I was clicking the camera was shaking, some of the photos the drivers faces were missing but still I managed to capture a few. It was a very proud feeling when Webber was holding the Indian Flag and also nice to see the Hamilton had brought his own camera to click his personal pictures.

Now came the time we were all waiting for, I had never stood for so many hours continuously in my life. Yes we were tired, exhausted but this is why we were here, to see the GODS of racing on our track and see them push themselves to the limit. We were told to stand on the edge of the track for one last inspection of all the teams and the FIA SLS AMG came and 2 people got off shaking the hand of the medical staff. It was the F1’s own official doctor on duty. It was such a proud moment for us being greeted like that, being shown the THUMBS UP and people letting us know on the radio, how good we had been doing. The spectators watched us as if we had been doing this for a long time.


The track car came and closed the track and soon it was time for the race to start. The pit light turned green and there were cars on track, everyone got excited to see them as if the race had started but it was just a lining up lap which was to be followed by a formation lap and then the actual RACE.


After the formation lap ended, all the red lights illuminated and then went out marking the beginning of the race, the roar of the crowd was louder than the sound of the cars. You could not hear them until they were pretty close to us. Immediately at the first two turns there was some contact between cars, and we knew this is going to an action packed race. Our Bahrainian supervisor Jamal had told us the smell of the fuel of the F1 cars is like perfume to him, it gives him a different high and he was right. The smell of fuel was something special and new smell of burning rubber and exhaust and it gave you Goosebumps when an F1 car passes you.

There were some incidents around the track and we were thinking that there won’t be anything in front of us anymore and that is when Massa’s car had another suspension failure on the left side this time and he came to a halt ahead of us and out of our jurisdiction. Nothing much happened after that around our section. I am pretty sure I might have missed some incidents and stories and I would love for other participating marshals to add their stories to mine. After all it is a little hard to remember a whole week of events 


Vettel was the leader of the race and he kept it till the end of the race showing everyone why he is champion. He appeared to a very calm and in a strange but slight way aggressive where he needed to be. As soon as the race ended we lined up on the track and cheered the drivers as they passed us. Then when the last car passed us we ran across the track and sat on a waiting flat bed and rushed to the podium area. The crowd was roaring and cheering us and clapping for the people on the podium. I felt really special as not everyone can go on the track and pit area like we did. It was something extra ordinary, my parents and wife had joined me for the race and were right in front of the pits in the grand stand upper tier. They saw me and shouted my name and I shouted back at them waving and giving flying kisses that look this is why I was here!! O what a feeling, this will be something very close to my heart. MIND BLOWING, the champagne was opened the drivers were having fun, we were having fun clicking pictures and shouting and crying and realizing that we had conducted our first ever GP successfully. It was official no media could change that. It had gone way beyond anyone’s expectation.

I hope you guys like my detailed description. This is my first experience story on TBHP and will be very personal to me. Please feel free to add/correct me wherever I may have gone wrong or missed something. I will add a few pictures of some friends I made there.

Thank you

Maximuzz

(please also rate the post as to how you found this thread thanks)

The people who are not in the orange suits are the Bahrainians A BIG thank you to them.
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Last edited by maximuzz : 20th November 2011 at 11:15.
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Old 20th November 2011, 11:09   #15
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Default Re: My Formula 1 Indian GP 2011 Marshalling Experience.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mashmash View Post
Wonderful Pics. I was a marshal too, MP23. I got loads of pictures too. Will post once you are done.

A correction



Total of 31 Posts Post 0 to Post 30. Only three kinds of Posts MP - Marshal Posts which included Chief Post and Flag Marshals, IO - Intervention Post which included Intervention officer and Intervention Marshals. There were two mirror posts, 22 and 25, which did not have a different name as such.

MASh
Thanks for the correction. Please do upload your experience and pictures.
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