The 2017 FORMULA 1 Etihad Aiways Abu Dhabi grand Prix doesn’t run on high-octane petrol alone – the biggest race weekend of the year requires a staggering amount of food to keep everything on track.
With around 60,000 fans from across the globe – Yas Marina Circuit’s 270 chefs are expected to cook 145,000 individual meals using 7,000 tonnes of rice, 6,500 tonnes of noodles, and 9,000 tonnes of fries over the four-day race weekend.
All this requires around 250 hours of prep and 100 hours of cleaning, putting the logistics involved in the catering efforts almost on par with the race itself.
Al Tareq Al Ameri, CEO of Yas Marina Circuit, said: “Making sure that everyone at Yas Marina Circuit has a wide variety of delicious food and drink options is one of the biggest and most important challenges of the whole race weekend.
“Each year to constantly innovate and improve, we have invested considerable time and resources into expanding our culinary range to ensure we offer healthy, good quality meals influenced by a wide range of cuisines from around the world.
“Planning for the F1® weekend means that meticulous attention has to be paid to maintenance, engineering, transport, media coverage, and meeting the needs of the teams. But making sure visitors to Yas Marina Circuit have the options is one of our biggest and most important challenges.”
Multicultural food menu
Visitors to Yas Marina Circuit will be able to choose from an array of meals and dining experiences, from high-end restaurants with great views over the race track, to more casual street meals from Asia, Mexico, Cuba, the Americas and the Middle East.
Healthy options will include juices and salads while anyone with a sweet tooth should try novelty treats like sweet pizza and nitrogen ice cream.
The introduction of food trucks proved so popular last year that the mobile kitchens are set to return for 2017. More than 70 F&B outlets, including more than 20 food trucks, will serve race goers a wide selection of meals, including Bunny Chow, which dishes up South African-style curry served in bread, Karak House, which serves Indian teas and Emirati sweets, Moti Roti, serving Pakistani cuisine, and Pink Burger, which cooks up healthy burgers.
Meanwhile, the food served in Yas Marina Circuit’s ‘Club Areas’ will include Italian, Cuban and American cuisines, while the brunches will focus on street food with live cooking stations.
For those attending one of Yas Marina’s Circuit’s corporate and hospitality suites, the in-house chefs will offer a selection of refined contemporary cuisines and international flavours.
Al Ameri added: “Our objective is to make the The 2017 FORMULA 1 Etihad Aiways Abu Dhabi grand Prix not just an incredible sporting and entertainment experience, but a culinary one as well.”
The 2016 Formula 1 Abu Dhabi
Defending race winner Nico Rosberg entered the round with a twelve-point lead over teammate Lewis Hamilton in the World Drivers’ Championship.
Their team, Mercedes, held a lead of two hundred and seventy-six points over Red Bull Racing in the World Constructors’ Championship. Rosberg required a podium finish to secure the championship; Hamilton required a podium to remain in mathematical contention.
Hamilton started the race from pole and went on to win the race, while Rosberg finished second, securing his maiden World Drivers’ Championship title. Sebastian Vettel completed the podium in third.
According to Autoplay, a sports website, Vettel took third followed by Red Bull drivers Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo, then the second Ferrari piloted by Kimi Räikkönen in sixth. Nico Hülkenberg took seventh, beating Force India teammate Sergio Perez for the last time as an intra-team rivalry.
Felipe Massa closed his F1 career with ninth place in a Williams chassis that he got to take home as a gift from the team.
Fernando Alonso scored the final point for McLaren, a touch of sweet for the team after the bitterness of Jenson Button retiring on Lap 12 with suspension damage.