(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel and Ferrari's Fernando Alonso may be locked in a battle to win a third Formula One title - but the fans have much bigger concerns.
While teams got down to the serious business of testing new parts out at the Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in recent days, fans had already begun the party at Yas Marina Circuit.
Close to 6,000 fans turned up for the pit lane walk on Thursday, which allowed them the opportunity to walk along the pit lane and watch the teams up-close. Fans also got to walk on a part of the start/finish straight.
And it has been standing room only at the picturesque Yas Marina, which is littered with close to 140 spectacular and unique yachts from around the globe.
There was the OEL Serene, flying both the Indian and UAE flags, and another sporting the Red Bull Racing flag and the Australian flag. Then there was Sundancer, Naseem Al Bahar, Hannah and Yachty Alee.
But what stood out among the modern transport of luxury were the classic lines of a wooden-built traditional Arabic dhow.
Nary an inch of the spacious marina could be seen once twilight hit the marina, though the crowds were reminded of the reason behind the party when music from one of the yachts was drowned out by Formula One cars coming out of a left turn at the Yas Viceroy Hotel.
While qualifying begins on Saturday, and the main race hits on Sunday, it will be hard to steal the limelight from the stage, with rock group Nickelback performing on Saturday and rap icon Eminem taking on the baton on Sunday. This follows a performance by Australian pop sensation Kylie Minogue on Friday.