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Racing in Australia is an experience like no other — here’s three reasons why

Written by Jasmin Low, Edited by Vyas Ponnuri

The 2024 Australian Grand Prix for many meant alarms going off in the early hours of the morning, in order to watch a race where the conclusion seemed forgone — Max Verstappen had secured pole position, and was poised to charge to another convincing victory. 

However, an unprecedented brake failure for the three-time world champion gave Ferrari the opportunity to secure a race win — and they did so, even taking a 1-2 finish. Carlos Sainz, who will be leaving the Italian outfit at the end of the year took a thrilling victory, followed by teammate Charles Leclerc, with the Papaya-clad Lando Norris rounding out the podium positions. 

I had the opportunity to attend all four days that the circuit was open to the public, and it was a truly special experience. Here’s a snapshot of the top three reasons why I loved Albert Park in 2024.

  1. The Atmosphere

The Australian Grand Prix has always been known for its crazy and passionate fans. The 2024 edition of the race smashed attendance records, welcoming close to half a million fans through the gate over the weekend. 

Crazy dress-ups, cardboard cut-outs, and massive crowds all vying to get a glimpse of drivers and personalities are some of the most memorable parts of my experience at the Grand Prix, as well as a great camaraderie between all fans. 

Cheers were especially loud for Aussies Oscar Piastri and Daniel Ricciardo, and honorary Aussie Valtteri Bottas, who has become famous for his love for the famous Australian lifestyle. 

  1. The Accessibility

The Australian Grand Prix offered plenty of opportunities for fans to get up close to the drivers, with the traditional ‘Melbourne Walk’ where drivers can walk through to the paddock entrance past thousands of fans, and take the time to take photos and give out signatures. 

The Melbourne Walk was open for a few hours each day, and most drivers made their way down it each morning (although Valtteri Bottas managed to sneak past on his scooter multiple days). 

The Fan Forum stage on the Friday and Saturday mornings saw hundreds of thousands of fans gather to see and hear from the drivers themselves, with some interesting antics from the drivers — Alex Albon even smashed a cupcake into the face of a fan. 

The track was made accessible for all fans, with accessibility platforms around the circuit and in important areas. 

3. On-Track Action

Whilst the F1 race did not include a whole lot of wheel-to-wheel action, there were plenty of other on-track moments to make up for it. Formula 2 and Formula 3 joined as support categories for the second time, whilst the Porsche Carrera Cup and Australian Supercars also made appearances throughout the weekend. 

Aussie motorsports legend Mick Doohan and his son Jack (who is a reserve driver for the Alpine F1 team) sped around the Albert Park lake on historical bikes and cars, and the electrifying sound of the heydays was music to a motor-loving person's ears. 

On a side-note, the Albert Park Street Circuit is now faster than Spa-Francorchamps, thanks to Carlos Sainz’s rapid Q2 lap. 

Overall, the Australian Grand Prix is an experience I’d highly recommend for those who like to get close to the action, both on and off-track. In an added bonus, Albert Park is set to return in 2025, as the season opener for the first time since 2019. 


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