The Formula One Singapore Grand Prix street circuit has received in-principle approval by the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), via the Singapore Motor Sports Council.
The in-principle approval will now allow construction works to begin. In the coming months, the FIA will conduct a series of inspections on the ongoing progress. The full circuit licence will be granted during the final inspection, which will be in the week of the race itself.
The 5.067km long street circuit, consisting of 14 left hand turns and 10 right hand turns offers a number of overtaking opportunities, challenging corners and gruelling sections that will test the true capabilities of the F1 drivers. Slated to debut on 28 September 2008, the F1 Singapore Grand Prix is the first Formula One street race in Asia and is one of three races in the 2008 F1 calendar to run anticlockwise.
Deputy Chairman of Singapore GP, Mr Colin Syn, said, “After months of poring over the drawing board, we are now one step closer to our dream. However, there is no time to celebrate - it is now full speed ahead for us to get this race on the road.”
The only outstanding decision, one eagerly awaited by all F1 fans, is whether the race will be held at night. Regardless, the circuit has already been billed by many as one of the most dramatic and atmospheric races on the calendar.
Set against the backdrop of downtown Singapore, spectators will get a close-up view of the garden city as the circuit winds past historic landmarks such as City Hall and modern buildings along the Marina Bay, such as the Esplanade.
Mr Lim Neo Chian, Deputy Chairman and Chief Executive at the Singapore Tourism Board, who chairs the F1 Working Committee, noted the project’s steady progress. “We are glad that the FIA has given the in-principle approval for the Singapore city circuit. The countdown to our inaugural race has begun. One year from now, F1 enthusiasts can look forward to experiencing the excitement of a unique street circuit in the heart of Singapore, which will take world-class drivers and their race machines past Singapore’s skyline, iconic city landmarks and tree-lined boulevards at thrilling speeds.”
In the course of the 61-lap street race, all eyes will be on the fast straights and series of technically challenging turns that will push drivers to their limits. The 500m Pit Straight where the race will start and finish will provide exhilarating racing and see cars approaching 300km per hour at top speed with excellent overtaking opportunities into the left hander at Turn 1.
The cars are likely to reach a maximum speed in excess of 300km per hour along Raffles Boulevard, where there is another prime overtaking opportunity, before braking hard through Turns 7 and 8 before heading towards the historic and cultural landmarks along St Andrew’s Road and Fullerton Road.
Turn 14 will undoubtedly see some of the most exciting action as the cars zip across the 97-year old Anderson Bridge and braking to an expected minimum corner speed of 80km per hour.
To meet the demands of a street race, the Land Transport Authority will manage the modifications that will be made to some existing infrastructure such as road kerbs and traffic islands. The new 1.2km road that forms the start / finish straight will also be constructed alongside the pit building. Work on the pit building has already begun, and is scheduled to be completed by end May 2008.
Corporate hospitality suites and packages will go on sale from late November 2007, with sale of three-day passes to the public due to start in December 2007. Single-day passes will be released for sale just before the Chinese New Year, subject to available inventory.