All stop on expressway to hear F1 roar


Traffic on road to Buddh International Circuit crawled as thousands of fans came to Greater Noida.

The Buddh International Circuit looked like a fair ground from the Yamuna Expressway on Sunday. At 2.45 pm, the film song Om Shanti Om blared from the speakers and a helicopter hovered overhead with a camera crew.

Whatever was going on inside wasn't visible from the expressway. Nonetheless, people stopped their cars and tried to sneak a peek or kept an ear out towards the direction of the circuit.

Exactly 15 minutes later, a big roar was heard and the sound of more than 23 Formula One cars reverberated across the area. The second edition of the Indian Grand Prix had begun. The noise was ear-splitting even on the expressway, around 500 metres from the track.

Ravi Kashyap was among those who stopped their cars to "soak in the sound". "We wanted to watch the race, but family engagements came in the way and we had to go to Agra. We timed our return journey in such a way that we were near the circuit around 3 pm. I wanted my daughters to feel the sound of Formula One cars. They couldn't believe how loud they are. It's incredible," he said.

Kashyap, however, was fortunate enough to escape the attention of security guards. People weren't allowed to stop on the expressway.

"Last year, people from nearby villages and others stood here throughout the race. This year, we are told not to allow any car to stop. A fencing has been put up on both sides, so we haven't had to deal with the villagers," Ashish Kumar, a security guard, said.

"Of course, by the time we reach a spot to ask a family (who have parked their vehicle) to leave, someone else stops to take a look at the circuit. But the people cooperated with us," he said.

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