Paddock gossip from Singapore - Part I
Nicole Scherzinger had actually intended to give the Singapore GP a miss, but on Sunday, she was seen entering the paddock hand in hand with Lewis Hamilton. Perhaps to make sure that Lewis wasn't distracted? After all, Mariah Carey had been booked to appear in a fringe event, and as is widely known, Hamilton has a crush on her.
Sebastian Vettel's debriefing session with his engineers lasted almost two and a half hours, and all the while, Sebastian's parents were waiting (more or less) patiently for their son to emerge. Papa Norbert was watching to see if they had finished but kept having to report back with a degree frustration: "The red light is still on."
The Singapore GP has its darker side - and not just because it takes place at night. As Sebastian Vettel reminded everyone at the press conference: "Two years ago, Fernando started from 15th on the grid but still won." Vettel grinned, the reporters laughed and Alonso, sitting next to him, blushed. Crashgate - gone but not forgotten.
At 5am on Sunday morning, Eddie Jordan emerged from the Amber Lounge Party in a jovial mood, having seen seven reserve F1 drivers - Chandhok, Fauzy, Razia, Tung, Paffett, Ricciardo and d'Ambrosio - modelling clothes in a fashion parade. Jordan was amazed to meet reporters who had just finished work at the press centre and were rushing back to their hotel rooms.
At least one title contender is feeling the pressure: after qualifying fifth, Mark Webber was visibly distraught. He angrily stormed past the waiting reporters and almost knocked the diminutive Kamui Kobayashi over on the way out. Somewhat taken aback, the Japanese driver was heard to mutter: "What was that for?"