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Paddock Postcard from Singapore 26 Sep 2010

Formula One Group CEO, Bernie Ecclestone with F1 in Schools founder Andrew Denford, Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Singapore, 22 September 2010. © F1 in Schools McLaren's Jenson Button with Unitus Racing team members, Ngee Ann Polytechnic, Singapore, 22 September 2010. © F1 in Schools Ron Dennis (GBR) McLaren Executive Chairman.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 15, Singapore Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Marina Bay Street Circuit, Singapore, Saturday, 25 September 2010 (L to R): Stefan Johansson (SWE) with Danny Sullivan (USA) FIA Steward and Eddie Cheever (USA).
Formula One World Championship, Rd 15, Singapore Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Marina Bay Street Circuit, Singapore, Saturday, 25 September 2010

Bernie Ecclestone went back to racing again in Singapore, as he pitted his reaction against F1 in Schools boss Andrew Denford during the F1 in Schools World Finals. The former Formula 500 racer, who visited the event at the Conrad Centennial Hotel, has been a long-time supporter of the LG-backed initiative and specially commissioned a trophy for each year’s champions.

After a tour of some of the competing teams’ pit displays, Ecclestone took on Denford in a head-to-head race on the specially designed track used by the students as part of the competition - and won with a faster reaction time.

“It’s super, super for the kids,” Ecclestone said of the F1 in Schools programme. “It’s really great and it gets them interested in Formula One and a lot of adults as well are asking what this is all about. The focus on engineering is magic. These guys will go somewhere, for sure.”

He said he firmly believes they will end up in Formula One, adding, “Yes, for sure, absolutely, they get exposure, people know them and they will get a good position.”

The F1 in Schools World Finals culminated in a celebratory awards ceremony. An American team, Unitus Racing, from James Madison Middle School, Virginia and Southeast High School, Florida, took the World Champions title after three days of intense competition. Their victory brought with it automotive and motorsport Engineering scholarships to City University, London, LG LED screens and the coveted Bernie Ecclestone World Champions trophy.

Meanwhile, in the paddock, many familiar faces made welcome appearances. Indy 500 winner Danny Sullivan was present again to help the stewards, while fellow racers Stefan Johansson and Eddie Cheever were joined by other former F1 stars Jacky Ickx and Rene Arnoux.

Ron Dennis arrived on Saturday, and former Jordan, Stewart and Jaguar designer Gary Anderson was busy on television duties in the paddock. The Prime Minister of Mauritius, Dr Naviachandra Ramgoolan, and former FFSA (Federation Francaise du Sport Automobile) president Jacques Regis, also made a visit.

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