Pre Orders
Military items
1-12 STORE
1-20 STORE
1-24 STORE
Sports Car STORE
1-43 & 64 STORE
Finishing Materials
Ref. Material
Diecast Store
How To
Lotus 72C 1:12
Race Trips
Customer Gallery
Model Factory

Grand Prix of Brazil 2005
Sunday Race Day! (Day 6)

The wake up call comes waaaay to early! 6:00am already! It still looks dark. I get up and open the curtains to discover it is Raining! :(

I make sure I have everything I need. I get the last ticket out of the safe and head out the door. I cannot disappoint everyone at the Orange Tree Club, I still have to be the first one there. :)

With a little spring in my step, I march out of the hotel saying "BonGea" to everyone I pass. And across the street to my faithful Taxi company. "Interlagos Por Favor" (There were different Taxi drivers every day. I never saw the same one twice!). Off we go. I had been told the traffic would be really bad on race day, but it was surprisingly calm, with the exception of the MotoBoys, who always seem to ride as if everyone is in the way.

This driver takes me a slightly different way, but it's OK.

As we get closer to the river the traffic is building up, my driver is very aggressive, looks in his mirror, beeps the horn and changes lanes. Pulls up the side of cars to the light, in a parking lane, then immediately cuts them off to be in front! One driver in his nice new Volkswagen Golf, or the like, took exception at that and overtook us on the next bend and cut us off then slammed on the brakes! My driver just beeps the horn and waives nicely.

Over the bridge and closer to the track on the other side of the road, people have camped out to keep a place in line to get in. Well that's what I thought. In actual fact these people had no intention of going to the race. They camped out so they could SELL their place in line! It still made no sense to me. If you can buy the tickets ahead of time why would you stand in line?

I get the Taxi to stop at the top of the hill where he can turn right and get away from the mess. I thought I was being nice. As I walked away, I saw him pull back into the traffic jam instead of going right. I guess he thought he would make more money going that way.

There are quite a few people wondering around aimlessly and others with a definite place to go. I arrived at my gate to find it is closed and I am motioned to wait in this other little area. I felt like a sheep in a pen about to be "dipped".

People with regular tickets (uncovered stands and General admission) were being let in, but not me. About 5 minutes later they let us in. They are handing out the 6 inch by 4 inch programs. I'm still hoping these are not the official programs.

I walk down the hill to the Orange Tree Club...........what's this the main gate is closed to it! It is raining very lightly, so I prop myself up against the wall across the street, that is partly protected by the overhang of the Heli-pad. I look through the gate and see the security crew are all ready and just standing around. They look over and waive and of course I waive back.

While I'm standing there I take a couple of pictures. One of the signpost and another of all the flags above the pits. Then one of the security crew waive me over to come in out of the rain. As I swipe my ticket and say "BonGea" this Tall Guy says "Good Morning how are you?" with a big smile on his face. I replied with just as big a smile "Bom! Obrigado". I was told he had learned this just to be able to say it to me when I came in. I felt honored.

Around the corner there was Adriana, but no Liliana. I understand from Adriana that Liliana had a very late night and was sleeping in. She sends me to the other end of the counter to join Fabio and crew in the morning chat and get my espresso fix and apple pastry. Fabio informs me he has some milk if I want it. No, say I. Why would I want milk in my espresso? Aparently there were a few other Limey's in the stand who had been asking for coffee with milk. After 3 espresso's and good chat I moved around to let them finish setting up and took some pictures.

You will see its ironic; although it is raining the fans who have tickets in the uncovered stands are already arriving, but in the covered stands there is no one, well except me. :) If you look carefully in the back ground of this shot of my stand, across the track you can see fans in their stands. And over the other side past the Senna S's the stands are filling up, but no one in the covered stands.

Today is going to interesting as you can see the track is wet and the city of Sao Paulo has disappeared from the horizon.

Time for trying to dry the track. The Formula Renault cars are out for their race. They are definitely having fun, although these pictures do not really show that. I have to admit I was not too interested in this race and only took the three pictures.

I was watching some of it, but mostly checking out the crowd that were going to be joining me today. There were three main groups of about 50. One obviously worked for "Purina" cat food, because everyday they arrived with hats and T-shirts with Purina on them and they were all Brazilian. The other group was obviously from a Honda dealership or importer as today they all turned up in BAR Honda shirts. And the third group all wore HP tops with "STAFF" written on the back. The rest came in their own colors, supporting their team or driver, or just there because someone gave them a ticket to with them.

Next up on the schedule..................Williams have not been doing too well this year so they had their own little race to run...........and just to be sure they would win, the other car was a road car! It still took the Williams 1 and 1/2 laps to catch and overtake it after giving it a 1/2 lap start. "YEHA! Now were talking!" some real racing!!!!! :D Actually it was listed as a "demonstration of speed".

The safety crews have taken to the track to help dry it some more. Ooops! No! This is the start of the Main event. This is the parade for all the safety workers. They need more recognition!

Under the Heli-pad the safety crews have their helmets all laid out perfectly, with one exception. That person probably has a 4 wheel drive and cannot keep between the lines. :)

It's getting closer to the time for the race as I hear the drivers are leaving on their parade lap on the back of the truck. I watch on the TV in front of me to see when they will come into site. As they come up the track towards my stand the track marshal's are crossing the track to the infield then back again. It looks like they are trying to find out which side of the truck their hero is, so they can get a good picture.

I'm not sure if the drivers are aware of which side to be on to waive at their fans as the truck approaches. The track marshal's in front of us get the best shots of course. In this shot some of the drivers seem happy to be there, Fissy, Fred Alonso, Jungle boy, Rubinho, Massa doesn't look too sure, and I'm sure that is Heidfeld laughing at someone else, DC looks really confused, JV, Trulli, MS and the Jordan drivers seem to have no clue where to look! Ralf looks like Jaun was feeding him some BS. While the Minardi driver look at each other and waive aimlessly. And in this shot you can see Kimi hiding in the back, DC and MS seem to think we should be behind them :) and Webber is really happy! While Ralf and Juan carry on their conversation. Trulli has no clue what he's doing. :)

Time for something to eat and drink before the race starts, and what's this PROGRAMS! OFFICIAL PROGRAMS have arrived! Nothing like cutting it close. I grab one and take it back to my spot, hiding under my jacket like a thief, just in case there is not enough to go around, sit down to have a quick flick through and read. !!!!!!!! It's in Portuguese! Oh well I can still look at the pictures. :)

I have decided to stay in my seat because it's a good view from here and the stand is getting crowded. I see this woman, I'm sure she was sitting a few seats away from me in Canada 2003. What? you saying you would not remember someone that good looking? :)

The track marshal's relax for the last few minutes, one on his cell phone, one enjoying examining his thumb with his nose. :) While the others by the pits get ready and head off for their places.

Another beauty in the crowd in a little "Time Slip"

Brazilian TV had a great intro with the F1 cars driving around the streets of Sao Paulo! I was hoping Speed TV would have shown it so I would have it recorded when I got home. No such luck! (If anyone has a copy of it though please let me know. Thank you!)

Here comes Alonso to take his place on the grid, followed by DC, Kimi and Michael.

The TV has a close up shot of Jenson that I want a picture of for reference on a future model, followed by a picture of the track showing the Lap record being held by JPM, unfortunately it came out really badly. Hey, but I'm not a professional. This is a hobby. Good job too! Can you imagine if I had to earn my living at it....I'd be living in a box somewhere. :)

Here Andresa gives Jaime a clip from behind to get back to work. :)

I'm going to try and fire off consecutive shots at the start when they come into the curve in front of me. Unlike my 35mm just holding the button down does not work, so I keep clicking the button. I miss Alonso and Montoya :( but catch Michael with his Kamikaze passing attempt on Fissy behind Kimi. But with his Luck he makes it! Followed by Button, Klien, Rubens, Ralf and Massa. The back end of that crew.Followed by Sato, I think Karthikayan, Albers, Trulli, Doornbos. followed by Webber. I know it's not a good picture, but the bright orange glow on the side is actually a fire! Which kept burning all through Laranje, as far as I could see. You can see the smoke from here.  I think that was what put him out on the first lap. Then around come JV and Monteiro after starting from pit lane That's not the full field and the marshal's are holding out the sign for "Safety Car on track" something must have happened.

There it is, the safety car has picked up Alonso and everyone just follows along. I understand that DC and Jungle boy got together in turn one. The fire on Webber's car was probably due to the same incident because he did get clipped in it.

Back up to speed! Here is JPM . Button "bogs down" as Klien gives challenge going up to Laranje Trulli coming from way back in the field.

Juan comes by again leaving the field behind him. Michael pushing, notice how black the inside of his wheels are from brake dust. Button seems to have gotten away from Klien now. But Rubens is in hot pursuit now.

Alonso gets by the slower JV Button followed by Rubens and just look at that camera man on the boom! I always thought they were electric. That guy on the other end is certainly getting a workout, and keeping the motion smooth, around and up and down!

Kimi is trying hard, but it is obvious JPM is faster and has no intention of slowing down for Kimi, especially if Alonso is in third place. Kimi will have to pass him on merit and skill alone. Ain't gunna happen! Sato being chased by Trulli. Fissy getting some nice wear on the outside left rear tire.

It is obvious at this point that Alonso is going to be World Champion today and McLaren will get their first well deserved 1 -2 of the year. Which makes my First trip to Brazil even more special!

I see Liliana has arrived and let her hair down watching some of the race. Jaime does not seem to happy with the outcome of the race.

As the McLarens come round for the photo ops. slower than they ever have and picking up all the slag on the side of the track, wouldn't you know they are the worst pictures I took. :( But I'm putting them here just because it is the end of a very special race for me. Juan & Kimi, Button, Alonso, Michael, Fissy, Massa, JV.

With the best picture of the only driver to waive at our stand when he went by, and one of my favorite drivers, also being from Sao Paulo.....................Rubens Barrichello!

Everybody in the stand crowded around the nearest TV's to watch the podium celebrations and Post race interviews. Which could not be heard as there was no volume. Ironically enough the podium was approximately 50 yds. to the left of me, just the other side of that Heli-pad.:)

I had to go and spend some time and say my goodbye's to my new found Brazilian Familia before leaving.

 Fabio and  "Good Guy"

on the left Andresa, on the right Adriana. With the crew in the middle

  and Liliana, with hair up. Thank you all for taking care of me!

There is a final note to end the day. As I was chatting with Fabio and getting everyone's email address's and giving them mine. And all drinking to each others health and anything else we could think of, I was introduced to this Gentleman, as "the Gringo fan who arrived every morning at 7:30 am before everyone else. He had been in charge of organizing everything to meet with the approval of the FIA and make sure it all went smoothly. He spoke English and we had a long chat and interesting chat, which included him wanting to know if there was anything he could have done to make it better or if there were things I did not like.......That was a door being opened I would normally jump through, being as tactless as I am sometimes.

However, I explained my biggest gripe was the fact that Official Programs did not appear until just before the race, and the fact that they were only printed in Portuguese. He apologized about the lateness of the programs and explained the problems he encountered and that he had people working through the night getting the programs for when they did. We also agreed that the traffic organization could of been better. The Police would not even let him get close in a car! We went on to have a nice discussion about Formula 1 and how it has changed.

There was preparations being made for a Post race party for all the workers, which just happened to be at the Orange Tree Club. I was invited to stay for food and drinks and to join in the celebrations. I felt honored and became one of the crowd actually being able to mingle properly with the people that had taken care of me for the last three days.

Fabio and William offered to give me a ride back to my Hotel and I accepted. This was a perfect end to a perfect trip to Sao Paulo and the Grand Prix of Brazil, 2005. I have been in touch with everyone there since I have been back.

I hope you have enjoyed reading about my trip to Brazil as much as I did telling you and reliving it.