As you’re no doubt aware by now, Formula 1 has recently been entirely dominated by a German.
As you’re no doubt aware by now, Formula 1 has recently been entirely dominated by a German. Before you start thinking the link to this article has transported you back in time 10 years, to the prime of Michael Schumacher, you haven’t, Sebastian Vettel is now a four time consecutive World Champion. How quick was that? Four titles, in the blink of eye. A more important question is this- where does Vettel now rank in the discussion of the greatest racing driver of all time? Keep your eyes peeled for an in depth discussion of just that in the coming weeks dear reader. For now though, let’s celebrate Vettel’s achievements, because that’s exactly what the man himself has been doing. Well, I suppose he has earned it.
True title celebration
Having won the his fourth consecutive title the previous week in India, Vettel and his Red Bull team had no time to celebrate having to perform a quick turnaround so as to be ready for last weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
So after Vettel predictably coasted to victory around the Yas Marina circuit, just to emphasise his current dominance, and with a fortnight gap until the next race weekend in Austin, Texas, it was time for a true title celebration. Not only was there Vettel’s success to party about, but also Red Bull F1 Racing’s 4th consecutive Constructors Title and a one-two for Red Bull in Abu Dhabi (with Mark Webber finishing 2nd), Red Bull Racing’s 100th Podium.
So after the race formalities were completed, and with his closest rival Fernando Alonso in hospital for precautionary check-ups, Vettel, alongside his Red Bull Racing team played host the biggest ever Formula 1 celebration at The Podium Lounge. You can see some of the photo highlights via the following Dropbox link:
The Podium Lounge is fairly new event on the F1 calendar. Having being staged at the Singapore Grand Prix since 2009, it is now expanding, conveniently in time for celebrations. Founder Robbie Hoyes-Cock said the expansion to Abu Dhabi this year was the result of five incredible years in Singapore. “Since 2009 The Podium Lounge has been the go-to party when F1 rolls in to Singapore,” said Mr. Hoyes-Cock, adding “This weekend we’ve been able to share this amazing experience with an equally-dazzling jewel in the F1 crown in Abu Dhabi, and can’t wait to return next year!”
So just was is the Podium Lounge all about? Well I’m glad you asked!
In the first UAE event, The Podium Lounge brought together an ultra-hip crowd to a high-octane party over three nights headlined by international DJ’s Sander Kleinenberg, Seb Fontaine, and the official Red Bull Racing DJ EROK on Sunday night. There was also a surprise guest performance by UK’s Victoria Aitken. Guests were also treated to a fashion showcase by fashion designer Zaeem Jamal.
If Vanessa Feltz is there- why not you?
Now dear reader, if you, like me, have absolutely no interest or indeed any idea who any of these people are, do not panic! This is because in addition, The Podium Lounge had a number of celebrities, royalty and personalities in attendance across all 3 nights.
The post-race party hosted Vettel’s team of mechanics, engineers, management and friends including racing legends Damon Hill, David Coulthard, Rubens Barrichello, Eddie Jordan and other personalities including Sky Sports F1 presenters Simon Lazenby and Natalie Pinkham, football legend Diego Maradona and erm, Vanessa Feltz.
The Podium Lounge is now confirmed to take place at the 2014 Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne and looks set to continue it expansion into other events in Shanghai, Monaco and Austin.
And you, yes YOU can be a part of all this.
Guests have the choice to purchase either a general admission pass ($138), a general admission pass that includes a bottle of Moët & Chandon Champagne ($258) or a general admission pass that includes a bottle of Dom Pérignon Champagne ($458). If you have even more money that you wish to part with, you can go even further on stuff like the VVIP Table which is so exciting I can’t concentrate enough to even type what is included.
There is a dress code, something called ‘Elegant Chic’ and despite all the money you’ve spent, the DJs will not accept song requests (Cha Cha slide anyone?) and swimming is still strictly prohibited during the event. Guests who enter the pool will be asked to leave with no refund.
Now I get the partying element of Formula 1, I really do. James Hunt is one my favourite drivers, if not sportsmen of all time. And I know that Vettel’s and Red Bull’s incredible achievements should of course be celebrated. But this whole Podium Lounge franchise, I’m sorry I just don’t get its appeal. I thought Formula 1 was the most glamorous sport in the world?
For that amount of money, I don’t want to be partying to music I don’t know with people I’ve never heard of, masquerading as A-listers, or mechanics or Vanessa Feltz. For that amount of cash I’d want Rihanna as my own personal waitress with Emma Watson and Jennifer Lawrence waiting for me on the dance-floor with Calvin Harris playing the tunes.
The Podium Lounge looks like it will grow. However, until it reaches my specifications, I’ll happily get thrown out for swimming so that I can go chat with Fernando Alonso.
What do you think of the new lounge? Have your say below: