F1 fan on track to attend all 22 races

A FORMULA 1 fan is motoring along on a challenge of a lifetime as he attempts to travel 66,512 miles to watch every one of the competition’s 22 races.

Alex Snell, 30, is already off the grid and has smelt the fumes in Bahrain and Melbourne in the first stages of his dream trip around the globe.

Mr Snell, of Felixstowe Road, Ipswich, has saved for years to lead a jet-set lifestyle on the F1 circuit.

“I’m an ordinary guy who happens to be a big F1 fan,” he said. “This year, though, I won’t be watching the Grand Prix from the well-worn comfort of my lazy-boy chair.

“Nope, I’ll be at the circuit. In fact I’ll be at all of the circuits, for every race, for every session, and for every lap.”

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For the next eight months, Mr Snell will fulfil a life-long ambition and join the elite few to travel across 19 countries and five continents, to watch the 11 teams and 22 drivers.

Mr Snell used to sit in front of the TV with his dad as a child and watch the races on a Sunday. His favourite racer is Sebastian Vittel and Monaco, Singapore and Abu Dhabi will be the highlights of his epic trip.

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An operations assistant for Blyth Valley, an online insurance broker based at Ransomes Europark in Ipswich, Alex decided to take a break from his life at home to watch his heroes in action.

Mr Snell has already been rubbing shoulders with racing legends Michael Schumacher, Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button and thanks to a pit-side pass he has seen the world’s most high-performance cars in the team garages.

He has also met Jenson Button’s father, John.

Mr Snell flew to Melbourne in Australia for the second race of the season on Sunday.

After the race, which was won by Button, Mr Snell was one of hundreds of fans who flocked to the track after the gates to the circuit were opened.

He said: “I followed the majority and went for a quick sprint up the main straight, which turned out to be an inspired choice as I just managed to catch Jenson as he sprayed the champers.”

From podium pictures with grid girls to his track-side adventures, Mr Snell has high hopes for the rest of the tour.

“I’ve no idea if there’s anything else coming up but, to be honest, it’s going to have to be pretty special to top the last few days,” he said.

Mr Snell will now race off to some of the world’s most glamorous locations including Milan, Tokyo, S�o Paulo and Abu Dhabi, which hosts the last race on November 11.

His travels can be followed on his blog at www.getjealous.com/alexjsnell

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