Someone from the F1 signage company would have ended up with a sore arse today after they spelt “Spanish” wrong in pit lane.
I asked a local if that’s the way the Spanish spelt it and he advised no. It was only painted last night but shortly after the first practice session, the three or 4 wrongly spelt hashtags were blacked out (see 1/3rd the way down on the right of the pic below).It was mentioned on the PA at the track and on the F1.com live coverage during FP2. It was one hell of a cock-up.
I spent time covering the arrival of the drivers prior to FP1. We were told Lewis would be riding his motorbike to the track so three of us waited for some time in the hope of snapping this “event”. This was not Lewis.Neither was this.It turned out that he’d slipped in another entrance after being driven in so no Lewis-on-a-bike pic for me.
Kimi Raikkonen arrived and when he turns up, the punters have to be on the ball. You see he doesn’t stop for anyone. He’ll sign stuff and tolerates selfies but he just barrels through the crowd focused on getting to the sanctuary of his Ferrari motorhome. If you want an autograph or selfie you have to walk with him; and at speed. Most of the other drivers do stop which draws other punters and pretty soon they’re there for minutes much to the fans’ delight. The sun shone today making photography a joy. Unlike a track like Baku, Barcelona is a dream to get around with Mercedes providing a fleet of minibuses which we can wave down as they circumnavigate the track both inside and outside. This results in a great variety of shots. In the afternoon I was one of 14 photographers to snare a spot on the roof of one of the circuit buildings. If you don’t have an F1 vest like no. 682, you have to wear a tabard to photograph trackside. It was a fair nuisance today as the wind on the roof was blustery. Panning with the cars as below blurs the finishing line.While keeping the camera still and focused on the line and using a shutter speed of 1/80th of a second produces a blurred car. Here’s how Roman Grosjean’s car was returned to the pits after he went off. And here is a selection of other pics from two sessions.Ferrari unveiled their new halo with mirrors that stick our the side. It looks bizarre.Here’s Max Verstappen facing the wrong way as he exited turn 1. Here’s Nico Hulkenberg getting messy towards the end of the lap, kicking up dust and stones as he gets back on to the tarmac.Tomorrow we will find out who starts on pole for Sunday’s race and we’ll get to see how the huge mural at the paddock club entrance turns out. Here’s one of two artists getting a start today.