I finally made it into the Circuit of the Americas on Friday for day one of the United States Grand Prix. Once inside, I discovered the most sophisticated and elegant purpose-built racing facility in the United States.
Friday’s track action included just the first two stages of Formula 1 practice. In between sessions, I toured the paddock, pit road and the emergency facilities. For the sake of intelligence in the super-secret world of Formula 1, I was not allowed to take pictures inside any of the teams garage stalls.
Outside of the garage is an anything goes mentality. If you can snap a picture, it’s yours. Teams near the top of the standings will have mechanics purposely stand in front of their cars while they are propped-up because they don’t want photographs to be taken of their aerodynamic secrets.
Teams near the back of the field are not as protective. This includes Marussia, HRT, and Force India. As a result, the above photo album shows exactly what it’s like inside the garage of a Formula 1 facility.
Lastly, don’t expect to see a driver walking around the garage ala NASCAR or IndyCar. F1 drivers leave through the back door of the paddock and are exposed to a live crowd for only a few seconds.
Enjoy the album and check back for more United States Grand Prix diary posts throughout the week.