1. Every grandstand seat at the Yas Marina circuit is under a roof. We don’t know how waterproof it is, as it is there to protect spectators from the heat and glare of the sun.
2. There’s a slice of Paris in this part of the world, as the Louvre Abu Dhabi museum is the latest cultural project to be opened in Abu Dhabi, just a few weeks ago, on 8th November this year.
3. Abu Dhabi is the richest city in the world with an estimated wealth of over US$800 billion.
4. The Abu Dhabi Statistics Centre reckons there are almost 384,000 camels in the country. They are heavily outnumbered by over 3 million sheep and goats.
5. Watching the outside of the Yas Viceroy Hotel change colour as night falls is one of the visual highlights of this race. The hotel has 5,056 glass panels and it takes a team of 15 window cleaners one month to clean all of them.
6. The Falcon is the national symbol of the United Arab Emirates, which is made up of seven different Emirates, Abu Dhabi being one of them and also the capital city.
7. Approximately 80% of the population of Abu Dhabi is made up of expatriates.
8. Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque holds a number of world records: the world’s largest dome of its kind (32.7 metres in diameter,) the world’s largest chandelier (10 metres in diameter, 15 metres in height) and the world’s largest carpet. The latter covers an area of 5,627 square metres, weighs 47 tonnes and was knitted together by 1,200 weavers.
9. Abu Dhabi has featured in some unusual songs: one simply called “Abu Dhabi” by New Zealand band Split Enz and another entitled “Last Flight to Abu Dhabi” by English singer Billy Bragg.
10. In theory, this race should be called the United Arab Emirates Grand Prix, but this is the only race on the F1 calendar to be named after a city rather than a country.
11. The Ferrari World theme park next door to the race track, boasts the world’s fastest rollercoaster, which reaches speeds of 240 km/h in 5 seconds.
12. In February of this year, a mountainous area of the UAE saw 10 centimetres of snow fall, with temperatures dropping to -5 Celsius.