Sunday, March 1, 2009

New Turn Names for F1 Racing Track in Singapore

New corner names for Singapore Grand Prix circuit Three of the corners on the Marina Bay Street Circuit, host of the Singapore Grand Prix, are to sport new names following a competition created by race organisers in conjunction with the Singapore newspaper, Today.

Turn 1 will become known as ‘Sheares’, relating to the Benjamin Sheares Bridge which towers over the track at that point. The bridge - and now the corner - takes its name from Singapore's second President, who led the development of the island state from 1971 until his death in 1981.

Turn 7, the scene of some of the most spectacular overtaking moves during the inaugural 2008 night race, will now be called ‘Memorial’, due to its proximity to the imposing monument honouring civilian World War II victims.

Finally, the triple-apex Turn 10, which last year claimed Kimi Raikkonen and Giancarlo Fisichella among its victims, will now be named after Singapore’s most famous cocktail, the ‘Singapore Sling’. The drink is said to have been invented by Ngiam Tong Boon at the Long Bar in the nearby Raffles Hotel. The cocktail or sling is made up from a mix of gin, cherry brandy and Benedictine.

“Just like any icon, the corner has to be treated with respect” said Colin Syn, deputy chairman of the Singapore Grand Prix and one of the competition judges. “Drivers have to be careful here, but it can serve as a slingshot if they tackle it well.

“I guess after the exploits of some drivers last year, there could be jokes about a Wallbanger, but we chose to name the turn after the Singapore Sling because it is known internationally and fans everywhere can relate to it instantly.”

The 'It's Your Turn' competition received close to 1,800 entries from as far afield as Spain, the United Kingdom, Brazil and Canada. The panel of judges took into account names that were punchy, have a strong local connection and are easy to pronounce.