F1 cars take stroll in Istanbul streets for trailer video

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Istanbul has been counting down the days for the Formula 1 Grand Prix after nine years of a hiatus as the last preparations and promotional video shootings are completed for the long-awaited event to take place on Nov. 15.

The technological masterpiece cars raced through the Istanbul streets near some of the city’s iconic landmarks, including the historical peninsula, the Galata Bridge and the Bosphorus coastline for a trailer for the race.

The cars also took a tour from Asia to Europe, saluting both continents as well as the city’s residents who were in a daze by witnessing a historical moment.

Watching cars speeding up to 300 kilometers per hour from the sidewalks, some citizens did not miss the opportunity to immortalize these rare moments by recording them on their smartphones.

As the COVID-19 pandemic forced Turkey to organize the grand Prix without spectators, residents were only able to follow the spin of the vehicles so close.

The Formula 1 race on Nov. 15 will be a significant opportunity to promote Istanbul and Turkey, the nation’s Turkish youth and sports minister said.

“Turkey is one of the countries that perform all kinds of events in the best way with warm hospitality in many sports branches and excellent facilities,” Mehmet Kasapoglu said at an event to promote the race at Intercity Istanbul Park.

“Sport means brotherhood, love, unity, and solidarity. These concepts are most beautifully expressing the spirit of this geography, our country, and this beloved nation,” he said, while noting that Turkey will always raise the bar nationally and internationally.

It is a great loss that the race will be conducted without spectators in the seats because of the pandemic, he said, but Turkey will once again prove how beautifully and safely it will carry out such an event despite the coronavirus, he added.

Istanbul Governor Ali Yerlikaya also expressed his disappointment, saying that it is unfortunate that the race would be held without spectators this season but he hopes that future races will have the audiences and show the capacity that Istanbul holds.

“We want the whole world to see the power of Istanbul,” he added.

The last Formula 1 Grand Prix in Istanbul was held on May 8, 2011, and the 56-lap race was won by German pilot Sebastian Vettel after starting from pole position.

While the Turkish authorities voiced their desire to make sure the race’s return was a permanent move, a calendar released by the organizers showed the city’s iconic racetrack missing from the next season.

Meanwhile, Mercedes team’s British star Lewis Hamilton has the first chance to become a seven-time Formula 1 world champion in Istanbul, giving him the opportunity to pull level with Michael Schumacher’s all-time record.

Hurriyet Daily News

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