Vietnam GP 2020: Site Visit
Construction work has officially started for the 2020 Vietnam Grand Prix. The 5.57km Hanoi street racing track features 22 corners and one of the longest straights in the sport at 1.5km. Our Director, Matt Warren fitted in a quick recce to Vietnam whilst he was over in Asia in March for the back to back Hong Kong and Sanya ePrix. We caught up with him to find out all about his trip and what the teams can expect on the streets of Hanoi next year.
Travel Places: Matt, you’ve just got back from three weeks over in Asia where you fitted in a whistle-stop site visit to Vietnam ahead of the 2020 GP. Where is the racing set to take place in Hanoi and what can the teams expect?
Matt Warren: Racing is taking place on the streets to the west of the city with the bulk of the track being built around the National Stadium. The circuit is around 45 minutes from the downtown area of Hanoi. It’s a busy, bustling Asian city full of energy, everyone that visits will have a great and unique experience of this part of the world.
TP: What’s the best route out to Hanoi from the UK?
MW: There are direct flights operated from London by Vietnam Airlines; however these aren’t operating daily. Alternatively, it is a very short flight from central Asian hubs like Hong Kong with Cathay Pacific. Additionally, the Middle Eastern carriers such as Emirates (via Dubai) and Qatar (via Doha) have some great schedules. We are currently working on securing flights with all of these airlines ahead of the 2020 Grand Prix.
TP: What’s your top tip for areas to stay?
MW: Really the only area to stay is in the cluster of hotels that are located close to the national stadium. There are a number of hotels within a 15-minute drive. There is no rail network in Hanoi so the roads are very busy; locals anticipate traffic being even worse than normal with the road closures that this race will bring. There are lots of options in the downtown area but these will be around 45-90 mins journey time depending on the traffic so you will need to factor in these transfer times.
TP: And how about the best places to eat?
MW: I wasn’t there long enough to check out around the planned track but there are not loads of obvious choices at the moment. The western hotels in that area all have their own restaurants and the business district which is close by, near to the Novotel Suites, has a number of bars and restaurants.
TP: Are there any challenges to consider with this new race destination?
MW: I think the fact that it’s going to be the first time that the city has hosted a street race will put down some pretty big challenges locally, particularly in a city that relies so heavily on its road network. Driving will be a big challenge, our recommendations would be to make sure you hire vehicles with drivers, local knowledge will be crucial with road closures but also local experience of driving in Hanoi will be important as well to keep your team and staff safe.
TP: What’s your Top Tip for the guys heading over in 2020?
MW: Where possible try and get organised as quickly as possible for hotels and cars. Supply is going to be limited and those that can move fastest will make sure that they are protected with some good options for the race. If you leave it to the last minute or the end of the year, and some of the hotels are sold out, then you could be facing quite a long commute in and out of work each day.
To hear more about how we can help you with team, media or sponsor travel to the Vietnam GP 2020, get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org for all things travel, hotels and car hire.
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