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Old 9th November 2011, 17:09   #46
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Default Re: The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida

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Great Travelogue. You'll must have had quite an experience. Also wanted to inform you that the car being taken on the flatbed was not a Porsche but a 458 Italia.
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Originally Posted by Fireblader85 View Post
Absolutely. It is evident from the centre exhausts and the diffuser that it is indeed a Ferrari 458 Italia. Nice travelogue ninjatalli. Waiting for the next installment.
It indeed was a 458 Italia. A yellow one. I remember seeing this flatbed parked in Thane. A small gust of wind blew the covers and exposed this beauty.
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Old 9th November 2011, 17:10   #47
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Default Re: The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida

Nope its the White 458.
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Old 9th November 2011, 17:16   #48
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Default Re: The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida

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Originally Posted by toiingg View Post
Brilliant Travelogue and great narration.

5 Stars.
Thank you! That was quite an honor!

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Originally Posted by Irish View Post
These are the electricity cables in the NCR region. Old open wires (Aluminum) have been replaced or are being replaced, to control / stop the power theft.

Cheers!
Irish
Interesting! Didn't know that. Have they done this all across the city/region? I have a picture of a "normal" electricity pole which I was going to put up in the next post

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Originally Posted by Mumbaiya View Post
Great Travelogue. You'll must have had quite an experience. Also wanted to inform you that the car being taken on the flatbed was not a Porsche but a 458 Italia.
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Originally Posted by Fireblader85 View Post
Absolutely. It is evident from the centre exhausts and the diffuser that it is indeed a Ferrari 458 Italia. Nice travelogue ninjatalli. Waiting for the next installment.
Wow. Wish we had know that then itself! I guess that the first Italia for me!

And yes, will be putting up the next installments by tonight.
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Old 9th November 2011, 17:33   #49
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Default Re: The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida

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Originally Posted by ninjatalli View Post

Interesting! Didn't know that. Have they done this all across the city/region? I have a picture of a "normal" electricity pole which I was going to put up in the next post

I can CONFIRM about the 'Delhi' State, where the electricity has been privatized long time back. Since then these companies got the wires changed in every area as their 'TOP' priority. Lot of money has been invested by these companies in such projects. If you find such open wires in Delhi then either it should be a high tension cable or an 'exception'.

Not everywhere in the surrounding areas (Up & Haryana) of Delhi, same has been applied because its still under government control.

Cheers!
Irish
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Old 9th November 2011, 18:22   #50
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@ Ninjatalli - Thank you so much for rolling the ball here . I did the same trip with the only difference that I left on 23/10 and got back on 2/11. Also I did a short trip to Agra while on the way to Delhi from Jaipur.

I was too lazy to write a travelogue and upload BUTTT your thread has given me the much needed motivation. Will get my travelogue up in a few more days.

Till then, look forward to your story and wonderful pics.

PS - Did you have fun on the NE-1 from Ahmedabad to Vadodara?? I bet you did.
Nice! That is even longer than what we did. We were thinking of making a halt at Agra via faridabad - but seriously we were out of holidays

Actually I find the NE-1 expressway quite boring - I have worked out of Ahmedabad over a year, have used this highway numerous times. In fact I prefer the old Ahmd - Vadodara highway, except it gets a bit too busy at times.

Will await your travelogue.
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Old 9th November 2011, 18:38   #51
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Default Re: The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida

Hey Ninja excellent travelogue and great pics! You seem to have whipped up quite a pace compared to my own Bangalore run (1800+km in a leisurely 36 hours on the road). I guess you had to, since you had more distance to cover.

The Vento looks wonderful in the pics- shadow blue really does this car justice! Keep posting.
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Old 9th November 2011, 19:52   #52
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The Metallica Concert

So what do you do when a part of your plan gets cancelled without any fault of your own, an event which you have waited for years to happen, an event for which you travel hundreds of kms across 5 states. Do you go berserk and break everything that you see around you like a maniac? Or do you simply laugh about it and have a few drinks to forget it all. More on this later.

We land at our friend's place in Gurgaon and are informed that people have started arriving at the concert from 9 in the morning. Now this is news to us, as the gates were supposed to open only after 3 in the afternoon. I check with a few more friends, and they confirm the same, infact one of them has already reached the venue and reports that the place is completely chocked up with people.

We decide to cut short our "rest", and look out for a quick lunch. We look around us, all we see are malls. In Rome, do what the romans do, right? So that's what we do. We head to the nearest mall, MGM mall and hit the food zone. Post a quick lunch, we head towards the ground. It's 2 p.m. and the crowd is huge. So huge that we decide to wait at a good distance from the gates. I move ahead to meet up with my other friends, but it's impossible to move through the mass.

While waiting for the gates, we see a weird scenario. Now there are about 5-8 queues for ticket purchase as well as for those who had a printout of the mail and had to collect the tickets at the venue. Now these should have been open since long, right? But it's less than an hour for the gates to open, and yet they are not issuing any new tickets.

Although we find that weird, we shrug it off. Who cares. But something's wrong, that much is clear. 3 o'clock comes and goes, and the gates are still closed. I check with my other friends (who are close to one of the gates) and they still haven't opened any of the gates.

The crowd gets restless, and there is a lot of commotion all around. Finally around 4, the gates are opened, and people stream in. Everybody moves towards the stage - after all these are guys who probably have been waiting from the morning, they want their money & time's worth.

Now what happens next is a bit unclear. Apparently the security enclosure around the main stage was a flimsy structure that did not hold up against the weight of the crowd and it collapsed.

While this is happening we are still entering through the gates. By the looks of the crowd outside, the ground inside should be packed to the teeth. We enter and find the ground more than half empty. And we were one of the last to enter. Clearly the organisers are far from having a sold out concert.

But that's the least of their problems now. The organisers come on to the stage, and start pleading with the crowd to go back a few paces. That's all they wanted apparently, some space so that the barricade could be setup again. Although we wonder if the original one couldn't stand up to the first wave of the crowd for less than 5 mins, how would a makeshift barricade standup against the entire crowd for over 2 hours.

This keeps on going for the next two hours. We decide to lay down at the back which is empty. Soon others start following our lead and settle down at the back. But still close to half the crowd hog the stage and refuse to budge.

Around 6.30 in the evening, a new guy comes out on the stage. There is movement in the crowd, now maybe it is going to start. Instead he starts blabbering about "technical difficulties" faced by the group again and again. Something's fishy, the crowd senses this.

Soon a few minutes later, his voice is heard again - but now the person is clearly talking from the backstage - he announces that the Metallica group currently is attending a news conference at some other part of the city and they have decided to postpone the concert to the next day, same time. He "requests" the crowd to leave and come back again tomorrow afternoon.

Like that would work. The crowd goes berserk. It starts with a few F**k you & few other expletives! Then the crowd gains confidence and start throwing water bottles and stuff. A few bold fellows try to climb up on the stage, but are pushed back.

So what do we do? We start laughing. Onlookers probably thought we had gone mad, but actually we found it extremely hilarious. All that effort and this happens. We start walking towards the gate. Surprisingly most of the crowd think like us and have already started leaving. As we leave I give a look at the stage again - people are hurling anything they can get at the stage, even those 20 liter water jugs! (wonder where did they find those! ) The last image I have in my mind is of some 20-30 guys climbing on to the stage.

We head out back to our place and decide to just drink. After three days of driving, we needed that. But we had come this far to hear music, so we head to "Attitude" pub, a restaurant that also has live music. Fortunately they aren't that bad either. Later on we head to one of the numerous dhabas that are the lifeline of the various call centers that work out of the DLF buildings. Apparently each of these dhabas have a MNC name too - the one we had food was called PWC dhaba A few parathas and some coffee later, we head home for a good sleep, atleast for the three of us, we still have the race tomorrow!

Electricity anyone?
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08789.jpg

The crowd outside the venue after the gig was "postponed"
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-metallica-concert.jpg

Attitude Pub (image taken from the net)
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Last edited by ninjatalli : 9th November 2011 at 19:57.
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Old 9th November 2011, 20:16   #53
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Default Re: The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida

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Originally Posted by nileshch View Post
Nothing like a dirty well-driven Vento. A sight to behold.
Ha! I prefer a clean one any day

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If you remember, could you tell us where all did you see interceptors? Would be good to know when travelling through RJ!
Honestly speaking I (think I) saw one about right in the middle of the highway, but didn't see any at either of the toll gates. Same was the case on the return journey.

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Originally Posted by noopster View Post
Hey Ninja excellent travelogue and great pics! You seem to have whipped up quite a pace compared to my own Bangalore run (1800+km in a leisurely 36 hours on the road). I guess you had to, since you had more distance to cover.

The Vento looks wonderful in the pics- shadow blue really does this car justice! Keep posting.
Yes sir! But I am awaiting yours too! The more the better!

Last edited by ninjatalli : 9th November 2011 at 20:19.
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Old 9th November 2011, 22:27   #54
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Default Re: The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida

Appreciate your sense of humour about the Metallica cancellation. It can't have been fun watching all that madness for sure. Believe me, we in Bangalore were on tenterhooks till the first strains of Creeping Death emerged from the PA, fearing a repeat of the Gurgaon fiasco.Eagerly awaiting the F1 updates.
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Old 10th November 2011, 11:42   #55
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Default Re: The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida

Lovely way of penning the Metallica fiasco! Good that you can actually have a laugh about it.

This TL is getting interesting by the day! Please continue. Get to the F1 part already, will you?
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Old 10th November 2011, 12:10   #56
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Day 5 (Oct 29th)

Route : Gurgaon - Chhatarpur - Mehrauli - Hauz Khas - Kalkaji Mandir - Jasola Apollo - Noida - Greater Noida - Buddh International Circuit - Kalkaji Mandir - Gurgaon

Kms : 150 kms (Approx)

The D-day approaches. For us, both qualifying & race day are D-days. I am so excited, I wake up early. And I look around I'm not alone. So the three of us go for a morning drive to see how Gurgaon looks in the morning. The roads are empty with hardly a soul to be seen.

But hello, there's an early bird. Surely this fellow out here to throttle his BMW. No, we wisely decide not to race with him. As my friend quipped, Hame apni aukaat pata hai

He asks - Wanna race?
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08793.jpg

Good that we refused!
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08794.jpg

By the time we return back to our friend's place, there are more cars to be seen on the road, but still far from the chocked up roads you get to see during the day.

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08796.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08798.jpg

We quickly get ready and start on the road to pickup @dippy & @f50 who were to meet us at Kalkaji mandir metro station. Thankfully the traffic has still not picked up pace (it was a Saturday after all) and we reach the metro station in around 40 mins. Next stop - Galgotia college (Greater Noida); to pickup our parking permits for the race.

Surprisingly there are no ads in Delhi or Gurgaon about directions to the race track, but thankfully there are enough signs for Noida and we follow the same.

Soon we reach the Noida -Agra expressway, it's a glorious stretch of 8 land expressway with absolutely no stoppage points (read : Toll). There is hardly any traffic on the roads, and we are pressed hard not to exceed 120kmph. But we do. Again. And again. Heck, we are going to the race track, aren't we!

Soon we see the exit for Greater Noida, and thankfully the college is right adjacent to the highway. The JP group have done a commendable job out here - the highway signs were specifically put up for the race. You had signposts indicating the directions to pickup the car permits, for parking (for those who didn't purchase the parking tickets) and even signposts for the different zones (more on this later).

Picking up the permits is a breeze, the Bookmyshow staff at Galgotia college are extremely friendly, and getting back to the highway is clearly highlighted by signposts at every junction, every turn. And if you still had any confusion, there was a police jeep stationed every odd km, ready to help you.

We enter the sidelane of the highway to reach our zone - North zone. Now the entire race seating arrangements had been divided into 5 zones, North, South, East, West & Main Stand. Each zone had one or more seating arrangements, ours was the Classic Stand, North zone.

The highway itself was empty with a few cars, but on the sidelanes the only company we had were tractors. As we entered the sidelane, we probably experienced the moment of the day : the tractor in front of us does a wheelie!!! Now who does that!!!

All five of us explode, all at the same time. Sadly none of us has the sense to take a picture. And so the moment passes. But we keep slowing down every time a tractor passes up, hoping maybe this fella too would do something wicked - who knows, maybe a drag race?

Not on your life - says the tractor guy
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08806.jpg

First look at the race track in the foggy air of Noida
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08808.jpg

Soon we reach the gates for the race and enter. The first thing that comes to your notice is the parking space. Acres and acres of it. So much that you can hardly see the end of it. This is probably the first event I have been to where the parking space covers more than two or maybe even three times the space of the actual event.

Look to your right, Parking space
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08811.jpg

Look to your left, more parking space
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08812.jpg

And there is parking space on the other side of the road too!
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08813.jpg

Our parking area
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08814.jpg
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Old 10th November 2011, 12:27   #57
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While the rest of us start moving towards our gate, I see something in one of the parking lots. Seems like a limo - I head towards it.

What is that?
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08816.jpg

Looks like I ain't the only one interested
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08818.jpg

A BMW & a Hummer limousine!
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08819.jpg

We head towards our gate, Gate 29. Hold on, there's an ATM mark on the map next to our gate. And we do find one.

Mobile ATM - SBI rocks!
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08826.jpg

We wonder - what would be the need for an atm out here. It's not like we are going to splurge or something.
But then we look at the food rates.
And we find the reason for the ATM to be there.

Probably they forgot to put the decimal point
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08835.jpg

Now Dippy & Priyank (@f50) have seats in different sections, so we decide to have a few pics before we split for our respective seating areas.

The full team
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08827.jpg

Dippy's priceless expression probably thinking "Ye abhi photo lene band karega ki nahi!"
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08830.jpg

The huge walking area
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08831.jpg

We head towards our seats - it's still early and there is hardly 5% of the crowd. Who cares. We are spell bound by the view from our seats.

Whatever other Tbhpians (attending the race) may have to say about their sections, ours' was VFM! We get to see turn 1, 2 & 3 all together! And the turn 3 has almost a 180 degree turn, with close to 30 degree incline (this corner was at an elevated level)! hallelujah!

Turn 1 & 2
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08833.jpg

And the main USP of this section - Turn 3!
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08834.jpg
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Old 10th November 2011, 12:42   #58
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Now the downside of reaching early at the venue is not having a proper breakfast. How would we have known that the prices at the venue would be priced so high. But when the stomach growls, the mind, heart, every other part of the body listens.

The food stalls
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-img_0543.jpg

The practice session is about to start, yet we still head towards the food stalls.
Big mistake.

Now I have been watching F1 for over 15 years, if not more. There was a time when missing even the practice sessions on friday was considered taboo! But yet, I was not prepared for this.

The sound of an F1 car.
There is nothing better than it. Absolutely nothing.
The sounds we hear on the tv are probably not even 5% of the actual noise. We tried taking videos to record the sound. Didn't work.
You had to be there to hear the sound. Or a second best alternative - hear it through a live phone call, right when it's happening.

Now, everything comes to a standstill - your mind stops working, your forget about your hunger, even sh$t wouldn't happen if there's a F1 car speeding by next to you. We drop everything we have and run back to our seats, even a 300Rs burger (imagine a Gujju doing that - but yes we did it).

What went through my mind for the next half hour - I can't describe, so I'll let the pictures do all the talking.

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08836.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08839.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08840.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08841.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08846.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08852.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08855.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08856.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08857.jpg

Last edited by ninjatalli : 10th November 2011 at 13:03.
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Old 10th November 2011, 12:56   #59
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More pics

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08861.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08871.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08874.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08876.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-img_0530.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-img_0547.jpg




On a normal day on a normal road, these safety cars would have been enough to make my day. Today they were second fiddle.

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08894.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-img_0537.jpg




Once the practice session ended, there were other races that were planned in the time gap before the qualifying began. First was the JK Asia Racing Series. Now in retrospect, these cars hardly matched the power of a F1 car does, but what they lacked in the car was overcome in their racing attitude.

There was more aggression, more overtaking manoeuvres. And with such a case, naturally there were more chances of an accident. And that happened. Right in front of us.

The car being lifted off the track
The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08878.jpg

The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida-dsc08891.jpg

Last edited by ninjatalli : 10th November 2011 at 13:00.
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Old 10th November 2011, 14:00   #60
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Default Re: The F1 Roadtrip : Pune to Noida

Wonderful log and pics mate.

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The sound of an F1 car.
There is nothing better than it. Absolutely nothing...
+1 to that. Just as FP 1 was starting, I was a few Km from the track, which was just starting to get visible and don't know why I rolled down the windows but glad I did. The sweet sounds of the F1 cars was darn exhilarating even at such a distance. It became like a race against time getting to our stand! Hearing and watching them zipping by was magic. The whole day was spent just letting the roar sink in.

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On a normal day on a normal road, these safety cars would have been enough to make my day. Today they were second fiddle.
The sounds of these used to be the breaks from my reverie.
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