I remember vividly the first moment F1 came into my conscience – the Brazilian GP in 1991 – I was 5 years old. Ayrton Senna had won and my Dad (usually a calm man) was up on his feet applauding the genius of the world’s greatest ever racing driver. As you may have seen in the recent movie “Senna”, this victory was remarkable as it was his first ever win on home soil and he had to drive the last few laps with his car stuck in 6th gear. The effort involved must have been immense and when Senna won, he promptly passed out. I remember seeing the pain on his face and joy unconfined in the stands. Continue reading
Category Archives: F1
Well wasn’t that an interesting few weeks for all involved in motorsport.
We’ve had Bahrain on, then off, then TBA, then finally off again once the egg had found its way to Jean Todt’s face. Undermined in the public eye in your first year. That’s how to set your stall out, never fear though, you know you’ve always got the prancing horse.
Then we had an interesting week for marshals. The best of the best were obviously in France, ducking and diving from Audi parts but doing grand ol’jobs. As you’d expect.
The rest, were slipping, sliding, air-kicking and falling their way round F1 cars in Montreal. The warning signs were there, Vettel’s trip to the Wall of Champions was made even more enjoyable by the marshal tumbling a few feet down to the tarmac. (Obviously they were both fine, thankfully.) Continue reading
*Listening to : Adebisi Shank – This is the Second Album of a band called Adebisi Shank.*
From the rumours floating around the paddock this weekend, it certainly would appear to be so. With the circuits contract up for renewal and usual squabbles over cash flow, we may be about to lose what is arguably one of Tilke’s finest works.
From that point of view, what an action-packed swan-song the circuit had. Admittedly many overtakes were the product of DRS or KERS, but thats the playing field upon which F1 is sat this year. So relatively, it was exciting. However, the new regs or tyres must have had an effect somewhere – I can’t remember any other occasion where a move was attempted on Turn 8. Continue reading
He’s been labeled the best right back in Premier League history (are we forgetting Thomas Helveg had a brief stint in the Prem at Fortress Carra??), been ridiculed for his ‘admiration’ for David Beckham and irritated everyone, I would say outside of the red half of Manchester but that wouldn’t work… and been, in my opinion, possibly one of the most cynical players to play football, up there with Muscat (Maybe that’s a bit harsh, even on the GNev).
He may not be very close to my Favourite Footballers XI- in fact he’s not even on the bench of my Players-Whose-Existence-In-Football-I-Acknowledge-Let-Alone-Appreciate reserve team- but I’ve developed, today, a begrudging respect for him.
Yep, that’s right.
He was one of the very, very few one-club players left in the modern game and I know that if he had donned the yella’n'green for the entirety of his career I would have the same affection for him as those United fans do. He’s one of those (cliche alert) love him if he’s on your side/hate him if he’s not. Not only that he was one of the best at it, Robbie Savage and Lee Bowyer pale in comparison. His heart takes up his whole sleeve, he’ll give you every drop for his side and there aren’t too many of them about nowadays.
So there it is. I won’t miss him, though.
His announcement was almost the antithesis to the chaotic events of Monday night. Continue reading
Having gone to watch the Snetterton GT Trophy race just over a month ago, I left feeling that it once again highlighted the major problems with attending club car racing. With myriads of undefined series (and championships and races) taking place, it becomes very hard to understand what is actually happening. Reliant on the circuit commentary (which does an excellent job, although you’d be lucky to hear it most of the time) and a race program vaguely indicating who is what number, unless there’s a lot of action, it’s tricky to place the value of the event for the spectator.
It’s days like these when it becomes more clear why NASCAR is so prominent in America – lots of place changes and quite regular wrecks. Although that too is badgered by over-zealous yellow-flag periods (see also : Korean GP).
More problems come in simple logistics such as the weekend structure. With one solitary 15 minute race before the hour long lunch break, it seems unlikely that any traveling spectator would bother to come in time for the that particular.
The Formula Libre series was a mash-up of inappropriately paced cars which resulted in a procession – it may as well have been an open-pit test session. The Golf GTi series (which I partook in 3 years ago) has grown in strength and now attracts very good grids, however it too was fairly processional (as I discovered when I raced in it, the pace is usually down to the preparation of the car rather than the drivers merits).
*Listening to Kings of Leon – Radioactive*
Next season’s F1 grid is going to a young one.
His name? Sergio Perez. His rep? Second in this season’s GP2 behind the unlucky-in-F1 Maldonado and has been team-mate to Petrov in earlier years.
For a change we can firmly say F1 has a bright future. New teams are growing some adult teeth, and some testing their bite, this season’s title is not going anywhere yet and the next generation are getting their chances. The rumours of Villeneuve’s return feels like a distant memory.
But then there is the second announcement made by Sauber on Monday. This is a team, lest we forget, with nothing on their car but for a discreet Burger King bumper sticker. But that’s about to change, Mexican telecom giant Telmex will be lead sponsor next season.
Oh, I forgot to tell you all Perez’s nationality. Unsurprisingly, he’s Mexican.
How big a factor was this in Perez making the leap into the highest form of motorsport? It would be naïve to believe it to be none. This is nothing new, and it won’t be the last such appointment. Talent should outweigh any other factor in this game. But if Driver A is competent with a big sponsor or two then he will get the vacant seat ahead of Driver B who is more talented but can’t get a sponsor other than his local chippy and second-hand garage.
I don’t doubt Perez’s ability but there are many a-driver being overlooked for no other reason than money. There are only so many seats at Le Mans for those overlooked to make their name in.
But if Sauber bring back the blue on blue colour scheme I’ll forget all about this whole thing.
Williams’ have been at the top of sport for decades now. You have the two sisters who, when they turn up anyway, take women’s tennis to another level. Snooker also has it’s own Williams star in the shape of fellow Welshman and former Crucible champion Mark Williams. Of course, the Welsh rugby squad boasts one or two as well, but for that I have no care.
But one, now all to often overshadowed Williams name in sport is showing signs of resurgence; that of Frank Williams’ nine time Formula One Constructors Championship winning outfit.
Resurgence, you may think to be a strong word considering Williams’ comparatively poor 2010 Formula One campaign, that is when you think of their already acclaimed sixteen titles. But be aware, this now relatively small outfit on the grid has a rosy future ahead….
Well if things go their way.
There are no billion dollar sheikhs or international businesses behind this team. They are simply a well run British outfit, remaining competitive on a frugal budget and relying purely on the talents of their backroom staff.
And when you think of it like that, it is quite astonishing that Williams have been mixing it in qualy three of late, ahead of the Vijay Mallya funded Force India’s and more than matching the Russian oil driven Renault’s and now German conquered Brawn GP.
Indeed everything pointed to a disappointing campaign before the season began. The loss of Toyota power, and the return of the unpredictable Cosworth engine that had proved so unreliable with the team in 2006, all after BMW left Willams in the lurch to take over Sauber.
Only a positive driver line-up brought some hope.
* Listening to Relentless Fours – Grammatics *
This is a controversial viewpoint (I have ascertained from the internet and its many discussions on the subject), but I feel that the proceedings over the weekend were not as clear cut as the consensus.
Similar to how Red Bull were well within their rights to assign front wings to whomever they desired (being the bill-payers, and as it is essentially a business first), I felt that Ferrari were within their prerogative to swap the driver positions if they thought that was best for their season. It is a team game.
Similar to how teams tend not to send drivers out into the same part of the circuit in qualifying, it is mere self preservation of the constructors championship. The sport should be equipped in that a driver should be able to overtake if he is reasonably faster than their target. Currently, drivers have to take a big risk, and there just simply isn’t enough reward to quantify it.
However. Once again, drawing parallel’s to the Red Bull PR woes of the previous race, Ferrari’s violation comes down to the execution. Similar to Austria 2002 and similar to taking Webber’s front wing with precious few minutes before qualifying, it inevitably leads to a fan backlash.
Enter deafening silence. It’s not like it’s the most iconic, popular GP’s on the calendar and brings in numerous fans every year.
Should it disappear it would leave six races left in Europe, out of 19. And where do the majority of F1 fans live and can attend? Europe. Bernie has, and is, taking out one of the fundamental aspects of F1. The fans. The fans pay the tickets, but you’ll find rows and rows and rows of empty seats at most new venues.
And today he’s come out and said none of the new teams would be missed apart from Lotus and will, ney should, drop out by the end of the season. The only reason he wants Lotus to stay is because they’re called Lotus. Granted HRT are already struggling, but Lotus and Virgin will be on the heels of the back to midfield next season.
This is the equivalent of the F.A. saying Blackpool shouldn’t be in the Prem this season.