Tuesday 16 August 2022

His Majesty meets dignitaries during his visit to the BIC.

F1 ‘has put Bahrain on global map’: King

MANAMA, April 20, 2015

The Gulf Air Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix has put Bahrain on the international sporting map, His Majesty King Hamad declared yesterday (April 19).

He was speaking as he attended this year's Grand Prix at the Bahrain International Circuit.

The King was received on arrival by His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and First Deputy Premier, said a report in the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.

His Majsesty held talks with former Spanish King Juan Carlos, Shaikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Prince Khalid bin Bandar bin Sultan Al Saud, Shaikh Hamad bin Faisal Al Thani, Shaikh Nawaf bin Nasser bin Khalid Al Thani, Ahmed Senoussi and his son Abduljalil, Sami Taman, Simon Mail and Peter Sincock.

The King thanked them for attending the global motorsport event, hailing strong relations bonding Bahrain and their respective countries.

At the end of the race, he paid tribute to the Crown Prince for his efforts in consolidating Bahrain's standing in the international sport arenas.

He thanked the BIC employees for their dedication in ensuring facilities to visitors and tourists.

"Such a global sporting event offers a good opportunity to strengthen bonds of friendship, bolster co-operation and consolidate cultural ties between peoples and countries," he said.

He also praised the International Automobile Federation, participating teams, sponsors and the BIC for their role in the success of the event.

Meanwhile, motorsport enthusiasts attending the event spoke of the exciting race and festive atmosphere.

Tens of thousands of race-goers flooded the Bahrain International Circuit (BIC) in anticipation of a race many thought would be dominated by the Mercedes rivalry between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosenberg.

Hamilton won the race, having led for the majority of the 57 laps, with Ferrari's Kimi Räikkönen coming in second and Rosenberg third.

British sisters Jenny, 19, and Rachel, 26, flew in from the UK with their parents to attend the race.

"I've never been to a Grand Prix before," Jenny told the GDN.

"We're from England and we flew here for the race. We're staying longer though to see the country.

"We're here for 11 days and we want to see all the archaeological sites around Bahrain.

"The atmosphere here has been amazing, especially when Hamilton won."

Her sister is a rally driver who often attends motorsport events.

"I've had a fantastic time," said Rachel.

"I go to a lot of motorsport and I'm a rally driver, but this is a different level, it's very lavish.

"Especially here in Bahrain, things like the entertainment and activities make a big difference, so it's been amazing.

"I love all motorsport, so coming here was a lifetime opportunity I couldn't turn down."

Another spectator, 31-year-old Fatima, told the GDN she looked forward to the off track activities every year.

"This year's race has been great. I like the Formula One but the real reason I come is gathering of people," she said.

"I've come every year in the past 11 years, except for one, and this is the best year yet.

"There have been more food options, better activities and great entertainment."

German national Mario, 34, said he came over from Saudi to witness the race. "I'm a technical adviser in Saudi and I came over for the Formula," he said.

"It's a really nice atmosphere here. I've been to two Grands Prix in Germany and it's a similar vibe, very good.

"This is a nice circuit, everything looks so good.

"I support Vettel so I'm disappointed that he started second and finished fifth, but it was an interesting race.

"The night race is also much better than the day ones."

Bahraini Abdullah, 23, said he'd been converted to Formula One following the weekend.

"This is my first time attending the Formula One and I love the sport as a result, and have now become a fan to the level that I was watching the race anxiously," he told the GDN.

"I wanted Vettel to win so I'm a little disappointed, but it was a great race._

"The organisation of the race and all the entertainment alongside it has been fantastic, and it makes you proud to be a Bahraini." - TradeArabia News Service

Tags: Bahrain | Gulf | F1 | Fans | grand | Air | Prix |

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