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Published: Monday March 25, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Updated: Wednesday April 24, 2013 MYT 1:56:07 PM

F1 fans illuminate stands with their national colours

Markki Hiltumen (left) and Esa Sippola (right) holding the Finland flag at Sepang on Sunday.

Markki Hiltumen (left) and Esa Sippola (right) holding the Finland flag at Sepang on Sunday.

SEPANG: The Formula 1 Petronas Malaysia Grand Prix saw many racing fans decked out in national colours at the Sepang International Circuit in support of their respective teams.

One Finnish group led by Esa Sippola, 54, carried their country's flag with the names of over a dozen previous F1 venues.

“We've been coming to Malaysia since 1999, and we think that Kimi Raikkonen will win this year because he's from Finland!” he said.

His flag even had the names of a few drivers, especially Raikkonen's, though there was also a small tribute to the late Aryton Senna da Silva, who died in a 1994 F1 accident.

Sippola said Malaysia was the hottest of all the venues, but that would not stop him from coming here in the future.

Australian duo Rob Kirwan, 40, and Damien Dep, 39, were seen carrying two inflatable kangaroos on their way to the stands.

Hailing from Broome, Western Australia, Kirwan said that this was his fifth time to the circuit, and he brought first-timer Dep to break him into the sport.

“We've got these kangaroos to show that we're Australian!” the Mark Webber fan laughed.

He added that it was a lot cheaper to come to Malaysia than to go to Melbourne to watch the races.

“Once you factor in the accommodation, flight and all that, we can actually save RM2,500 coming here compared to Melbourne,” he said.

A Mexican family wearing the country's signatory sombreros led by Miguel Cortes, 43, said that this was their first time at an F1 event.

“We wish that Sergio Perez can win, and we're very happy that we're here today,” he said, proudly holding the Mexican flag.

Local brothers Indrajit Kumar, 27, and Chetan Kumar, 26, were seen holding a British flag tribute to driver Jensen Button.

Hooked on the race since 1999, the self-proclaimed “F1 fanatics” said that they usually came to F1 events after winning prize tickets from various contests.

“We always read The Star for these events and take part in many contests for the tickets,” said Chetan.

Related Stories: Hosting F1 has put Malaysia on world map, says Najib Celebrities make pit stops at Sepang Wolff fits the pieces into the right formula

Tags / Keywords: Nation, News, Sport, Business, f1

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