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GP Week : Issue 65
IT started with a media lunch on Thursday morning with Bernie Ecclestone, and ended on Saturday evening with 10,000 people falling crazy in love with Beyonce. No matter what you did in Singapore, it was di cult to get away from the fact that LG Electronics, F1's global partner, was starting to make its presence felt. Sure we've seen the logos on the timing screens and at various points around the track, but in Singapore we started to get an idea of why the company is involved in F1 and the philosophy that they're bringing with them to the sport. Thursday's lunch was great fun. LG showed us some new gizmos including a watch which is also a phone ... and an mp3 player ... and a camera ... and probably, within a few years, a personal teleportation device. We all decided we wanted one. Bernie, too. F1's impresario was on top form, discussing everything from Renault and Flavio (whom he thought had been dealt with too strongly), Flavio and QPR (Bernie questioned whether he'd pass the "fit and proper person test" either), Singapore, racing in New York city, Donington ... actually, Mr E was talking about pretty much anything and everything. LG's big deal for the weekend, however, was the "F1 Rocks with LG" set of concerts. The F1 Rocks concept had been jointly arranged by LG and Universal to bring an extra slice of glamour to F1's only night race. While some journos complained that the gigs had been put on at the same time as the F1 sessions, I think many had failed to really understand the point of the concerts. In the past F1 has seen concerts put on at the tracks, with access granted to those who are already at the race track with a pass for the weekend. They've also tended to verge on the "Dad rock" side of things... Status Quo, the Who, KISS ... great bands, but not exactly down with the kids. The whole point of F1 Rocks was to add a sideshow to the F1. It was to bring something to Singapore that even non-F1 fans could enjoy. It was to take those 16-25 year olds who aren't into F1 all that much and say, we know you love the Black Eyed Peas (pictured, left) and Beyonce, so here they are, and it's all thanks to the fact there's an F1 race going on this weekend. By association, then, there's a link to F1 and a chance that a new generation of fans who might not have bought an F1 ticket in the past might suddenly realise that this F1 lark is kinda cool, because if Beyonce, the Black Eyed Peas, N*E*R*D, and No Doubt are all on board, maybe they should be too. As for me? I was one of the lucky ones. LG gave me back stage access and I met the Black Eyed Peas, who were simply very cool, very nice people (Taboo was a gent, Fergie was stunning and Will.I.Am even complimented me on my choice of jacket), who then jumped on stage and absolutely rocked the place. In many ways, their show actually outdid Beyonce in entertainment value, but as one of the biggest solo artists in the world right now, there was no denying Miss Knowles' pulling power. The crowd adored her and at the end of her show she finished with an impassioned call to the crowd.: "I am yours." Well, for one moment she really was. The whole set of concerts was theirs, too. I hope F1 Rocks continues long into the future. It's a great concept, perfectly executed and well thought through. Another vibrant feather in F1's hat. Pos # Driver Team Laps Time Grid 1 1 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 61 1:56:06.337 1 2 10 Timo Glock Toyota 61 +9.6s 6 3 7 Fernando Alonso Renault 61 +16.6s 5 4 15 Sebastian Vettel RBR-Renault 61 +20.2s 2 5 22 Jenson Button Brawn-Mercedes 61 +30.0s 11 6 23 Rubens Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes 61 +31.8s 9 7 2 Heikki Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes 61 +36.1s 8 8 5 Robert Kubica BMW Sauber 61 +55.0s 7 9 17 Kazuki Nakajima Williams-Toyota 61 +56.0s 10 10 4 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 61 +58.8s 12 11 16 Nico Rosberg Williams-Toyota 61 +59.7s 3 12 9 Jarno Trulli Toyota 61 +73.0s 14 13 3 Giancarlo Fisichella Ferrari 61 +79.8s 17 14 21 Vitantonio Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes61 +93.5s 19 Ret 11 Jaime Alguersuari STR-Ferrari 47 Brakes 16 Ret 12 Sebastien Buemi STR-Ferrari 47 Gearbox 13 Ret 14 Mark Webber RBR-Renault 45 Brakes 4 Ret 20 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes23 Accident damage 15 Ret 6 Nick Heidfeld BMW Sauber 19 Accident 20 Ret 8 Romain Grosjean Renault 3 Brakes 18 FORMULA 1 Round 14 SINGAPORE Points -- Drivers: Button 84, Barrichello 69, Vettel 59, Webber 51.5, Raikkonen 40, Hamilton 37, Rosberg 30.5, Alonso 26, Glock 24, Trulli 22.5. Manufacturers: Brawn 153, Red Bull 110.5, Ferrari 62, McLaren 59, Toyota 46.5, Williams-Toyota 30.5, Renault 26, BMW Sauber 21, Force India 13. Why Formula 1 Rocks opinion WILL BUXTON GPWeek Editor F1 SINGAPORE >> 29