It was the Monaco Grand Prix last weekend. The days before the Grand Prix are very exciting since all the preparations are finished and it is a time for the the locals and the people involved in the Grand Prix to have a look around the race circuit and enjoy the pre Grand Prix festivities. So on the tuesday evening before the big weekend, we decided to have a walk around the circuit.
Preparations and racing car arrivals at the port:
There is no race track here, instead the race runs right through the streets of Monaco. This means that Monaco is pretty much closed for everything other than Grand Prix mania!
A map of the circuit.
Every year the roads are resurfaced to perfection just for the zoomie cars to race on.
Barricades, fencing and signs are put up all over town; bars and restaurants eagerly double up on their stocks and put more table and chairs out; the promotion stalls set up to sell baseball caps, t-shirts and the necessary ear plugs to soften the incredibly loud giant bees in a fierce hurry sound of the racing car engines; the super yachts and cruise ships fill up the sea infront of Monaco like a saturday morning town centre car park and everything including the gardens and flowers are ready for the busiest weekend of the year.
Boats and barricades:
We met up with golden retriever Toffee and his human to walk the race circuit and enjoy the sights, smells and atmosphere.
These cars at Casino Square are very shiny:
We started our walk infront of the Monte Carlo Casino.
What a very nice start to the walk:
On Casino square the people enjoying their drinks were smiling at us as we passed by. There was a definite buzz of friendly excitement in the air.
Saying hello at Café de Paris:
We then went to the Fairmont Hotel corner. This a slow, tricky part of the circuit for the cars so people like watching the race from here.
If you are interested in seeing some of my human’s video clips of the Monaco Grand Prix last year have a look at the following video. It gives you an idea of how this race weekend really takes over the town! The first part is from practise the day before the race and the second part is watching the race from a friend’s place at the Port. At the end of the race all the boats in the Port are allowed to sound their horns! (not normally allowed, so all the boats tend to make the most of it!):
From the Fairmont hotel we were led to the start of the famous tunnel bit! The tunnel is really noisy!
…and a route march down to the port:
An average lap of the circuit in a racing car takes around 1minute and 12 seconds…with all the sniffing and sightseeing it took us two hours!
At the port we saw all the lorries and engineers arriving. The racing car teams were setting up the garages for the cars and hospitality areas.
Red Bull lorry arrives along with Lotus, McLaren and Ferrari:
Red Bull hospitality area:
The late evening light just held on for us to walk around the port and have a sit down for our yummy treats…
Treats at the port and a ferrari sniff:
Then we headed back up the hill where with one last glance of the port, we could see all the boat and town lights start to twinkle on ready for the night ahead.
Late evening view of the port: