Monte-Carlo – spectators’ experiences

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Rubens Barrichello, Honda, Monte-Carlo, 2006Tell us about your experiences of visiting the Monte-Carlo street circuit.

You may wish to include:

  • When you visited the track
  • Where you watched from
  • How easy it was to get to
  • How much of the track you could see
  • What support races there were
  • What you liked and didn’t like
  • How much it cost and whether it was good value

Please use the reply box below to leave your comments.

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339 comments on Monte-Carlo – spectators’ experiences

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  1. Nikhil Shah said on 16th April 2011, 6:52

    Hi, I have Booked into Hotel Le Meurice at Nice for the weekend from fri and intend to do the Race only Sunday.

    Am still on the look out for a viewing expierence from a room or terrace or restaurant, budget is best, please revert if anybody has any ideas or offers.

    Thanx
    Nikhil

    • Hi Nikhil

      We have a few places left which might be of interest but they aren’t necessarily budget. If you PM me I’ll send the details but even if they are not of use I can point you in the right direction for other places to try.

      Ed

      • Susan Shakespeare said on 22nd May 2011, 15:18

        We are a group of 6 who have spent most of out budget on flights and accommodation for the Monaco Grand Prix, we were going to by GA tickets but after looking at this message board have now been out of, we have £150 each spare anybody got an ideas what we can do on this budget?

      • Anatol said on 24th May 2011, 11:14

        Dear Ed,

        You posted that you have a few places left, or could help with references for other places. Is this still the case? Can you advise? Many thanks.

        • Hi Anatol, no problem.

          Have a look at the very last post on this topic, the details are there.

          If you need more info or cannot find the post let me know.
          Best wishes
          Ed

  2. Zarinah said on 3rd May 2011, 21:24

    Hi, does anyone know if we can view the seating plan for Stand V? We’ve got 2 tickets in Row F, seat number 33 and 34 for Sunday but cannot seem to find seatmaps anywhere. Tried the Monaco Automobile Club site but as tickets are sold out for that stand,they do not offer up the seat map for viewing. This is our first time at Monaco so hope the seats will be fab! Thanks.
    Zarinah

    • Hi Zarinah

      If you go back to the ACM website and look at the seat layout for Saturday/Samedi you will be able to see it at the moment because there is one seat remaining in V for Saturday.

      Your seats are in the middle block 6 rows from the front and 3/4 in from the right as you look at the stand (not look from it).

      Ed

  3. Ladies and Gentlemen,

    I had on May 14, 1972 the privilege of meeting Princess Grace and riding with her in a victory lap around the course. She was only 42 at the time.

    I was a student at the time. I was picked out of the crowd, interviewed and selected to work with a film crew to film the race, join Miss Sweden on her yacht and to star in a commercial for Marlboro, a major sponsor of the race. This same footage was used by Monaco to promote their principality.

    It was magnifique!

  4. Alex Ings said on 4th May 2011, 13:24

    Earlier on in this thread, someone mentioned that if you bought Grandstand tickets for all three days, you got access to a pitlane walkabout on the Friday afternoon.

    My tickets have arrived, but I didn’t see anything in there regarding the walkabout. Can anyone give any clues?

    Also, on another note, I’m hoping to get some good photos, and am looking at hiring a lens, but I’m not sure whether to go for a nice wide angle, or something with a bit more zoom. Has anyone else done photography in Monaco who can give me a few pointers?

    Cheers :-)

  5. Hi Alex

    You don’t need your ticket for Friday afternoon, the pit lane is a free for all then. It’s unlikely you will see any F1 activity in the pits then, Friday morning is GP2 and Porsche Supercup. Maybe others have seen any F1 activity in the pit lane on a Friday afternoon but I certainly haven’t – anyone else?

    For your photography you are going to be limited by the access your pass/grandstand ticket allows. If you want to go to different locations to take shots you will need a pass for each location (unless you have media/official photographer credentials). Our photographers last year needed a pass for every location we had (i.e. every building in which we had terraces, each yacht in the harbour, the paddock plus every hotel and restaurant where we had guests viewing from also).

    Of course you could try to blag your way into different locations, I wouldn’t advise it but it’s not impossible :)

    The cheapest way of getting shots of F1 cars from different locations would be to buy multiple passes for the cheapest day Thursday (so you could have grandstand tickets in Casino Square, Tabac corner, St Devote, Piscine, etc all on one day – that’s a lot of running about though).

    The best way of getting lots of different shots from one location that I’ve found is to be as high as possible (e.g. a rooftop or high terrace in a central position on the start/finish straight) with really good equipment…for close ups you can then zoom into the pits, to the exit from the tunnel, first corner, beau rivage, the starting grid, and then you can also get panoramic shots, etc. etc. I’ve tried to post pics before but haven’t able to or I would post some to show you what I mean.

    If you stick with the one location I would personally opt for a lens that allows a decent zoom, shots with a wide angle from a grandstand will all be very similar but if you have a good zoom you will be able to pick out drivers, helmets, car close ups, distance shots etc. etc.

    Anyway hope that helps.
    Ed

    • Alex Ings said on 4th May 2011, 16:56

      Hello Ed, great reply as always – thanks very much for taking the time. I figured we wouldn’t see much F1 on the Friday afternoon given they won’t be running all day, but I still fancied having a wander about.

      As for photos, thanks for the tips. I’ve got stand V on thursday, B on saturday and T2 on sunday so hopefully I’ll be able to get some shots from there. Will do a bit more digging regarding lens lengths etc.

      • Perfect Alex, 3 different locations will give you great opportunities for different angles, shots, light, etc.

        I’d love to see some of your shots once you’ve been and I’m sure others would, likewise I’d be happy to let you see some of our images from different terraces, yachts, etc.

        Have fun in Monaco and if I can help with anything whilst you’re there or you need pointed in the right direction just email me or call.

        Ed

        • Alex Ings said on 10th May 2011, 13:38

          Thanks again Ed. I’ll share any decent images that I get (if any!) :-)

          • Alex Ings said on 16th May 2011, 14:11

            I’ve managed to borrow a Canon 70-200 from a friend of mine. I’m hoping it’s going to be long enough. We’re sitting in V on thursday (no specific seat) Stand B row E 32&33 on saturday and T2 row N 63&64 on sunday.

            I’m curious about hiring an ultra wide angle (maybe 10-22 or something for some nice shots of the harbour etc. Anyone any thoughts?

            Thanks :)

  6. Hi all,

    I have 2 grandstand tickets for the sunday in Stand N on the marina, has anyone got any experience of this stand and any tips etc for getting there? What to take? What the view is like? Are there toilettes nearby etc?

    Thanks in advance

    Tom

    • Hi Tom

      N is OK not the worst view, not the best. You are in the harbour and the atmosphere is great there. The stands are all pretty well signposted for getting there and there are plenty of marshalls around – if you get stuck just ask, if you don’t speak any French you might get the odd stroppy one who doesn’t want to speak English but just move on and ask the next one :)

      Not sure about location of the toilets but when you see one that doesn’t have a queue take the opportunity!!

      Would definitely recommend a kangaroo tv unit (now called fanvision), well worth the rental price. Take a cushion, some food, drinks and check the forecast – if it looks like rain take a waterproof poncho (you won’t be very popular if you put an umbrella up in front of other spectators).

      Hope that helps.
      Ed

    • itsmitchelltime (@itsmitchelltime) said on 9th May 2011, 20:09

      I’m in N on Saturday and Sunday, it got recommended to me from someone that had been before as between good view and not stupid pricing.

      I’m in Casino on Thursday.

      Looking forward to it as never been to Monaco before.

  7. Nikhil said on 5th May 2011, 4:46

    Hi Ed,
    Thanx ur msg, my email address is nikhilshah59@gmail.com and I am interested in what help I can get, pls advice and offer.
    Regds
    Nikhil:+919892260976

    • Hi Nikhil

      Sending you an email now.

      All the best
      Ed

      • Jake said on 6th May 2011, 12:38

        Could you also send me a similar email of what you offer?

        przybysz@gmail.com

        We have accom, just need tickets for the weekend. Is it best to buy on the day as I heard they do not sell out, or perhaps we can get better deals now? We don’t have a high budget but are prepared to pay what we need to get into a grandstand.

        Thanks…

        • Hi Jake

          You can leave it until the day and you will get people selling balcony spaces or tickets for other locations on the street but it’s a gamble. I walked past a group of 5 chaps last year who were just about to buy tickets on a balcony in a building I know has a poor view and they were being overcharged but because they were buying it on the day from someone in the street they thought they were getting a good deal. I intervened and the seller knocked 250€ off per ticket!

          My advice would be to find a location and level of service you like the look of and book it, that saves any messing about or pressure to find something on the day where you may or may not save money.

          Of course you could research the grandstands thoroughly, know exactly which stands and which seat rows you would accept and then trawl the streets until you find someone selling that spot – but I personally would rather pay a bit more take the pressure out of it and and choose a location you like the look of.

          I’ll send you the same options emailed to Nikhil, if they’re of interest or you need any other help at all just let me know.
          Good luck and have fun, Ed.

    • Hi again Nikhil

      Email sent but the PDF attachments are about 7mb so let me know you get it OK.

      Ed

  8. Dana said on 5th May 2011, 9:46

    Hi everyone,

    I was wondering how long does it usually take to receive the tickets bought online form formula1monaco.
    They said about three weeks, but it’s been six already and no signs of the tickets. So I am starting to get nervous…
    Did it take that long for anyone else?

    Thanks

    • Hi Dana

      I would call them, there is still time to resolve any problems but I wouldn’t leave it much longer.

      Where did you opt for in the end Portier or P?
      Ed

      • Dana said on 6th May 2011, 9:51

        Hi Ed,
        Thanks for the answer. I will write them or call them to see what’s going on.
        In the end I decided for the last place in P, I hope I’ll have a nice view…

  9. AB said on 6th May 2011, 16:26

    Hi all,
    I’ll be going on the thursday and friday (stand K), then back to the UK on Saturday to watch the main action on TV. I’d like to see the pit crews practicing changing tires. Does anyone know when they do this and if it’s available for general public viewing? Also I heard there are fireworks on the thursday night. Does anyone know what sort of time?
    Many thanks,
    Andrew

  10. Michael said on 7th May 2011, 21:54

    We will be attending the 2011 Monaco GP. We understand that deafening noise from the engines and from the fans’ air horns will demand the use of ear plugs, at minimum. Does anyone have any advice on what to bring to the race (ear plugs, noise suppression headphones, etc.)? Is there a way to listen to a live broadcast the race (or the intercom system) on radio, in English? Will Riviera radio or BBC radio be broadcasting live? Will a small, portable AM-FM (or HD) radio pick up a broadcast in English while sitting in the stands during the race? Does the Monaco area offer free wi fi service on race weekends? So many questions, so little time!

    • Steph said on 8th May 2011, 11:56

      I went last year for the first time. I normally don’t wear earplugs at places like Silverstone but you had to at Monaco and it STILL hurt my ears. This year I’m going to buy some ear defenders and wear those too. There were plenty of places selling them last year (not surprisingly) Not sure about radio but the track commentary is in english, french and italian (from what little I could hear lol)

      • Michael said on 8th May 2011, 18:25

        Steph: Thanks for the helpful information on ear protection! We’ll be investing in ear defenders and ear plugs before coming to the race. It’s still not clear whether a pocket radio would be helpful. With ear defenders, could one listen to the race broadcast on an AM-FM pocket radio? Also, my wife has an iTouch and will have Bose ear defenders, which means she will need wi fi service to listen on a Bose radio app. Does anyone know if Monaco itself is a free wi fi zone?

  11. Neils on Wheels said on 8th May 2011, 12:41

    Hi

    My tickets arrived for the Sunday – I booked in T2, but on my tickets it says T3. Should I be worried as I read on another forum that there is indeed a T3, but it’s shut on Sunday for the race. Confused.

    If anyone can tell me everything’s going to be OK I would greatly appreciate it.

    Cheers
    Neil

    • Hi Neils

      Not sure about the being closed on Sunday thing, never heard of that. But…if you booked T2 and you wanted T2 you should call the ACM and ask why you’ve been allocated T3. Have your paperwork and booking info to hand when you call, they speak English.

      Let us know how you get on.
      Best
      Ed

  12. Michael said on 9th May 2011, 21:31

    It’s still not clear whether a pocket radio (in concert with ear protectors) would pick up any live broadcasts of the race. Or if Monaco is a free wi fi zone for folks with laptops or iTouch devices and a desire to follow the race online, from the stands. Does anyone know?

    • Hi Michael

      Monaco has wifi from Monaco residents, unless you plug into free wifi from a restaurant or bar I’m not aware of a free service for visitors.

      My advice would be to hire a Kangaroo TV (now called FanVision) unit, money very well spent and will give you not only radio commentary in English but also video feed, stats, in car with the leader, etc, etc.

      Ed

      • Alex Ings said on 10th May 2011, 13:37

        Regarding the Fanvision, I’ve just looked on their web-site, and no mention of Monaco whatsoever.

        I hope it’s possible to hire one on the day?

        • John L said on 10th May 2011, 13:40

          I can’t speak for Monaco (and am about to find out like you) but I know in Melbourne this year you could hire them from the FanVision stands that they had at the track. Can’t see why it’d be any different.

          • itsmitchelltime (@itsmitchelltime) said on 10th May 2011, 19:59

            If I remember right on the fanvision twitter feed the last day to preorder for Monaco was a few days back.

            I suspect there’ll be a stand the same that I’ve seen in Singapore and Silverstone (although didn’t see in Bahrain last year – but that was just a flying visit for the race so could’ve easily have missed spotting it).

        • Hi guys

          I’ve emailed the chaps at FanVision and will post their reply as soon as it comes through.

          They did not have the booths at Monaco last year, you had to pre-order then collect from a location in Monaco which always seemed to be queued out the door whenever I passed it. I’m sure it wasn’t and just seemed that way but be aware if they are doing that again you might have to queue at busy times. I think they used Global Grand Prix/Platinum SAM as the collection point last year.

          I’m grateful to everyone who has posted comments of thanks, I really appreciate it.
          Ed

          • Michael said on 11th May 2011, 0:29

            I also emailed FanVision but no reply. However, I emailed a cyber acquaintance in Italy who works trackside on race weekends. He was able to pick up a very localized free wi fi signal from the Hotel de Paris but one would otherwise need a lot of luck finding another wi fit hot spot. Also there is a public network called “monaco telecom” but it requires a password and the purchase of an access card.

            FanVision rentals were 70€ for the weekend in 2010 (not sure if there was a rental tent in Monaco, however). Otherwise, many grandstands have a mega screen in front and the commentators on track speak French, Italian, English and German. So the casual fan ought to be able pickup some of the action without anything too fancy by way of electronics.

            Anyway, just wanted to share a bit more info for others who, like me, have never attended Monaco GP before.

  13. John L said on 9th May 2011, 23:54

    Hi Ed,

    Just want to say thank you for pointing us in the right direction from the other Monaco conversation, and thanks for the insights into the GP. The information is very handy and we should be well prepared for the GP this year.

    Only a couple of weeks now – I’m looking forward to it!

    Cheers,

    John

  14. John H said on 11th May 2011, 0:06

    Don’t land at airport til 11.00 on Sat morning. Will I have enought time to drpp bags off in centre Nice and then get to track for qualifying. Also what is the best time to arrive on race day.
    Cheers
    John H

    • Steph said on 11th May 2011, 20:36

      Hi John,

      You should make it but it’ll be tight. If you’re within walking distance of the train station bus 99 goes from the airport to the station. Takes about 10 mins. Check out theSNCF website for the train times. Trains to Monaco take about 20 mins.

      On race day it depends what you want to do but personally I’d get there early to a) soak up the atmosphere and b) beat the crowds. I’m probably going to get there for 9ish

  15. Stuart Adamson said on 12th May 2011, 18:08

    Helloo all,

    Im attending this years Grand Prix just for the race day, arriving in Nice on Saturday. Haven’t booked a hotel yet!!! Would prefer to stay in Monaco as Ive been invited to watch the race on a clients yacht and he is there for the full weekend. I know it’s not going to be cheap but can anyone suggest a budget hotel? I have a ticket for the secteur rocher which I may not need now so if anyone is stuck I may be able to help.

    Thanks, Stuart

    • Hi Stuart

      We have a few rooms left in Monaco but they’re not budget (Hotel de Paris, Monte Carlo Bay, etc.). I’ve emailed a couple of colleagues who might have rooms in some of the hotels in Beausoleil or similar which would be walking distance and will let you know if I have any luck for you.

      Much better to watch it from a yacht than rocher, that’s for sure :)

      Ed

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