40 ways to survive the off-season p2/4

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

A1GP - it may lack F1\'s sophistication, but it\'s tons of fun
A1GP - it may lack F1's sophistication, but it's tons of fun

How are you coping with the F1 off-season? Here’s ten more ways to get through the months ahead.

11 – Go karting

See how Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso, Kimi Raikkonen and the rest got started in motor racing. Karting is motor racing at its most cheap-and-cheerful. Indoor’s good, outdoor’s better – especially if it rains, though in Britain that often means frostbitten fingers…

12 – Drive an F1 car

OK, it’s a bit of a step up from karting. But if you’ve got the cash, you can have a go in an F1 car – and a fairly recent one at that. Rockingham circuit in Northamptonshire (near Silverstone) offers arrive-and-drive F1 experiences.

They’ve got a 1994 Arrows and a 1996 Forti so we’re talking occasional qualifiers rather than championship winners. For an eye-watering ??1,450 you get instruction in a series of increasingly powerful cars before they let you loose in the F1 machines. If anyone’s got the outlay to give this a try, please let me know…

Rockingham F1 experience

13-17 – Watch some winter racing

OK it’s not F1 – but some of them look a bit like it:

A1 Grand Prix

If you took a look at A1 a year or two ago and dismissed it at an under-powered, over-hyped feeder series, now may by time to give it a second chance. The Ferrari-designed second generation cars look much better and are far quicker than their predecessors.

On the other hand, the series looks to be on shaky financial ground at the moment, so it might be a case of ‘enjoy it while it lasts’. Round two takes place at Chengdu, China, this weekend.

GP2 Asia

The next race isn’t until December but with so many F1 driver arriving from GP2 these days it’s definitely worth keeping an eye on the offshoot GP2 Asia championship.

GP2 Asia 2008-09 calendar

Race of Champions

Held in Wembley stadium, London, on December 14th, the Race of Champions boasts a seriously impressive roster of drivers: Michael Schumacher, Mark Webber, Sebastian Vettel, David Coulthard, Jenson Button, Tom Kristensen, Sebastien Loeb – and they’re trying to bag the new world champion as well.

Race of Champions

Trophee Andros Ice Racing

The Trophee Andros Ice Racing championship attracts many French former F1 stars. Alain Prost will be returning to the series this year and try to win a third consecutive title. Ex-Toyota racer Olivier Panis will also contend. Will Sebastien Bourdais make an appearance?

Trophee Andros

World Rally Championship

The World Rally Championship will end and start again before we see more F1 action. The Rally of Great Britain is in December, and action starts again in February next year.


18 – Build a model F1 car

Here’s a project to immerse yourself in on a cold winter weekend: assembling an intricate F1 model. If you’re looking ror a particular kit, try the link below. They can even supply advertising stickers for kits where tobacco or alcohol logos are not included. If you’re built an F1 model, show us a picture of it on the F1 Fanatic Facebook Group.

F1 Specialities

19 – Build a Lego F1 car

F1 plus Lego plus Ferrari? It doesn’t get much better. There’s a brilliant range of Ferrari F1 lego available and I don’t mind admitting I’ve got one of them myself. Have a look at the 1:9 scale Ferrari F1 car, Ferrari F1 team truck and the Ferrari F1 pit scene – it comes with little ‘Felipe’ and ‘Kimi’ stickers, but the traffic light refuelling system is conspicuously absent…

More F1 Lego

20 – Share your Grand Prix experiences

Been to a Grand Prix this year? Leave a comment and tell other F1 fans all about it. We especially want to hear from people who’ve been to Bahrain, Shanghai and Fuji Speedway.

F1 circuits – spectators’ experiences

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40 ways to survive the off-season