The Singapore Grand Prix at Marina Bay Street Circuit debuted in 2008, making history as the first night race in Formula One. Today, Singapore is one of three night races on the Formula One schedule, with Bahrain and Abu Dhabi joining the fold. Singapore’s debut was massively successful and remains hugely popular among drivers and fans alike, which explains why it’s no longer the only night race in Formula One.
With the famous Singapore skyline serving as a backdrop, the Marina Bay Street Circuit boasts one of the most spectacular environments in Formula One. Powerful lighting systems allow drivers to clearly navigate the track while providing fans a heightened sense of speed with sparks flying from the cars’ underbodies and the lights reverberating from their sinewy shapes. The harborside location makes Singapore a modern-day Monaco, and its 23 turns are the most of any Formula One venue.
The Singapore Grand Prix is the longest race of the year in terms of duration. Every Formula One race at Marina Bay Street Circuit has come to within four minutes of the mandated two-hour time limit. Two races have been cut short of the scheduled 61-lap distance because of this limit – 2012 (59 laps) and 2014 (60 laps). The longest Formula One race at Marina Bay Street Circuit was the 2015 Singapore Grand Prix, which eclipsed the two-hour time limit by 1 minute and 22 seconds. When the time limit comes into play, the leader is shown the checkered flag when he crosses the start/finish line at the end of the lap following the lap in which the two-hour period ended.
During the course of the Singapore Grand Prix, lows will range from 25-26 degrees Celsius (77-78 degrees Fahrenheit) to highs of 29-30 degrees Celsius (85-86 degrees Fahrenheit). Relative humidity ranges from 62 percent (mildly humid) to 92 percent (very humid), with a dew point varying from 22 degrees Celsius/72 degrees Fahrenheit (very muggy) to 26 degrees Celsius/78 degrees Fahrenheit (oppressive). The dew point is rarely below 21 degrees Celsius/69 degrees Fahrenheit (muggy) or above 27 degrees Celsius/80 degrees Fahrenheit (very oppressive). Typical wind speeds vary from 0-18 kph/0-11 mph (calm to gentle breeze), rarely exceeding 21 kph/13 mph (moderate breeze).
During this event drivers endure sauna-like conditions in the cockpit and can lose up to 3kg of fluid during the race. The circuit, with its bumpy surface and 21 turns, is one of the most physically demanding races on the calendar.