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Vitaly and Oksana at F1 Melbourne: Triumph and Tears for the Sport’s Odd Couple

Published: March 28, 2011

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There are a number of big stories about the 2011 Melbourne F1 Grand Prix. One of the biggest is that Vitaly Petrov scored third place for Lotus-Renault, which also made him third in the driver’s championship table because it was the first event of the year. It was a moment of triumph for Petrov, who was often disparaged in 2010, and a moment for tears from his manager, Oksana Kosachenko.... 

Sebastian Vettel on Pole in Melbourne: Formula 1 Season Starting To Take Shape?

Published: March 26, 2011

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The Melbourne F1 qualifying yielded some surprises, but not at the very front of the pack. Here is the starting grid for the race: 1. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 2. Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 3. Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 4. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 5. Fernando Alonso Ferrari 6. Vitaly Petrov Renault... 

Bernie Ecclestone: A Short History of F1’s Billion-Dollar Brain

Published: March 22, 2011

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How is it possible to go from 21-year-old racing driver to a 80-year-old boss of the world’s most glamorous and expensive motorsport, and finish with more hair than you started with? I don’t know. But I have been studying Bernie’s long and hugely successful career, and I would like to share with you some moments from it. It’s a terrific story, and would make a great movie, even... 

Bahrain Bites Bernie’s Butt: Protests Zap F1 Season Opener

Published: February 17, 2011

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The first race of the 2011 Formula One season is scheduled to take place in Bahrain on March 13th. That fact is not due to there being any motorsport tradition in the region, but is entirely due to large sums of money being paid to FOM (Formula One Management), the company headed by Bernie Ecclestone. That is the commercial basis of the sport. If you can put up enough cash, you can host an event. Western... 

Proton and the Lotus Heritage: Can They Truly Lay Claim to It?

Published: February 5, 2011

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I am sure that Proton make very fine cars. Their advertising says they do. Not that I would buy one, or wish to be seen dead in one. Actually, I don’t know if they make hearses. My antipathy to Proton is based entirely on their venture into F1. Having purchased the last of Renault’s shares in the Renault F1 team, Proton have re-branded it as Lotus-Renault. There are court hearings in progress... 

F1 Drivers Of 2010: Some Winners And Losers

Published: October 17, 2010

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Although the 2010 F1 season is not quite over, it is possible to see which drivers have had a good year, and which have not. My perspective here is to consider which drivers would be good choices for an F1 team in 2011, ignoring commercial issues and looking solely at their race performance in 2010. Those who have enhanced their reputations I class as winners; those whose stock has fallen become losers.... 

England and International Football: A Lesson from History

Published: October 16, 2010

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In the world of international football many things have changed in the past 44 years. The ball has changed colour, and no longer becomes so heavy with water that it strikes with the force of a cannonball. Gravity has apparently become stronger, causing players to fall to the ground much more often. Players no longer wear stout boots, but promenade in ballet slippers giving no foot protection whatsoever. The... 

Michael Schumacher: F1’s Asphalt Soldier

Published: August 1, 2010

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He’s washed-up, he’s finished, and he must know it. But there is no grace in Michael Schumacher’s last battles, and no forgiveness for any who have failed to bow low enough to him in the past. Anybody can make mistakes, even a great seven-time world champion. But Schumacher made two big mistakes; he decided to come back, and he came back with Mercedes GP. By what epic feats of mismanagement... 

Ferrarigate: I Name The Guilty Man

Published: July 30, 2010

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In most sports, it is accepted that influencing the outcome of an event by means other than fair competition is cheating. Even in F1, where sportsmanship is a puny weakling being menaced by muscular thugs, it is illegal for a team to fix the result of a race by ordering a driver to concede a place. Yet at Hockenheim 2010 we saw Ferrari arrange for Felipe Massa to throw away a race win in favour of... 

A Tip for Mark Webber: Shut Up and Drive

Published: July 12, 2010

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Bad-mouthing your employer never looks good. You know it, I know it, almost everybody knows it. But Mark Webber doesn’t appear to know it. Thus, we saw him complaining to the TV cameras about his position in the Red Bull team after Sebastian Vettel was given preferential use of a new gee-whiz car part. “I would never have signed a contract for next year if I believed that was the way going... 

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