Your questions: Silverstone tips, Monza track invasions and, erm, number twos

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Barrichello spent five years with the number two on his Ferrari
Barrichello spent five years with the number two on his Ferrari

My inbox is full to bursting at the moment, so in an attempt to make some progress through it I’ve rounded up some of your questions and attemptted to answer them all below.

And as ever the F1 Fanatic commenters are on hand to fill in the blanks where I can’t.

Silverstone travel

First up Franceso is heading to the British Grand Prix and needs some advice:

I’ll be attending the race weekend, and I plan to drive from London to Silverstone and back every day with a rented car.

Do you think it’s worth it, or is it better to sleep somewhere around the circuit? Is it possible to sleep in the car somewhere?

I would definitely advise trying to find somewhere near to the track to stay. However, this close to the race weekend, most of the nearest hotels and campsites may have been booked up for some time.

It’s worth checking for local hotels (try Premier Inn or Travelodge) in case of last-minute cancellations.

However if you’ve got tickets for the park-and-ride it’s quite possible to do the trip from London – I have myself in the past. I’ll be at the race myself and we’ll be organising a meet-up for anyone else who’s going. Check out the forum and keep an eye on the blog for more information.

Read what other F1 fans have said about visiting Silverstone here: Silverstone – spectators? experiences

Electric shocks

Texas F1 Fan has a query about pit stops:

What are those strips that the cars drive over in the pit as they come to a stop to get tyres/fuel ect? Are they ground straps to electrically ground the car so the pit crew don’t get a big static shock when they touch the car?

I think you’ve answered your own question there! As far as I know the strips are there to keep the car earthed during refuelling and prevent any static build-up from causing an ignition.

They may also serve the same purpose in the event of a KERS malfunction – we all remember what happened to that BMW mechanic:

Cornering speeds

Simon wants to know:

Do you know whether there is any data available for car speeds achieved in qualifying, specifically for turn eight [at Istanbul]?

I was reading on the Times blog that Hamilton claimed the current Mclaren was “10-15kph slower” than the Force India around turn eight, and wanted to see how close to the mark that was.

I’d actually be quite interested to see an article analysing the Mclaren at this stage (being a Lewis fan!), as Turkey and Silverstone both have plenty of the high-speed corners that seem to be the car’s biggest weakness.

I’d like to see some of that data as well, unfortunately I’m not aware of any good sources for it! If anyone has got some information on the cornering speeds of this year’s cars, please post in the comments…

Number twos

Robert asks this question about ‘number two’ drivers:

Under the current driver number system, the team mate of the reigning world champion wears the number two on his car. Since this system was put in place, which driver has spent the longest time as car number two? If I had a guess, it would be Rubens Barrichello.

Good guesswork Robert! Here are the top ten drivers who started the most races with the number two:

Driver Years Races
1 Rubens Barrichello 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 87
2 Alain Prost 1985 1989 1993 48
3 David Coulthard 1994 1999 2000 41
4 Gerhard Berger 1991 1992 32
5 Carlos Reutemann 1972 1979 1981 31
6 Jochen Mass 1975 1977 31
7 Nigel Mansell 1990 1994 20
8 Jacky Ickx 1970 1971 1974 18
9 Felipe Massa 2008 18
10 Giancarlo Fisichella 2006 18

What are the odds on Barrichello breaking the 100 mark next year?

Prize money

Marco wants to know:

Do you have an idea of where I could find out how much money each driver earned in the 2008 season?

Prize monies are a closely-guarded secret in Formula 1, although other racing series make them public knowledge. I don’t believe I’ve ever seen concrete details on how much drivers or teams get for winning points, races or championships.

Sorry Marco! Perhaps one of our readers can help?

How to invade the track at Monza

Rodrigo from Brazil wants to know how to get on the track at Monza:

Hi Keith, I saw your review of Monza ’07 – great pics and info!
You mentioned that you could not enter the track and head towards the podium – why? Do you know which grandstands allow for that?

It looked to me like fans in most of the grandstands along the start/finish straight were able to find their way onto the track. However the ones who got ready to go first – several laps before the end of the race – were best placed to leg it up the straight and get to the podium for the traditional celebrations.

Unfortunately, this being my first time there, we hadn’t anticipated how much of a rush there would be. Plus we were down at the chicane, some way from the start/finish area.

Next time I’ll book a seat closer to the pits and make sure I don’t miss it. I’d love to hear from anyone in the comments who’s been at the Monza podium celebration.

More on my Monza visit:

BBC F1 music

Finally, Hannah asks:

Do you know what the songs are that the BBC are playing at the end of each grand prix and who they’re sung by?

I’ve been searching the internet with no luck!

I haven’t been keeping a note of this, though I did remark on it in the live blogs over the weekend when they played songs by two bands I like: The Prodigy and Pendulum.

There is a thread on the forum naming some of the songs that have been used. Anyone who remembers any of the many other songs the BBC has used in its excellent F1 coverage, please share them below.

Send in your questions – and answers

If you can help add to any of these answers please post a comment below.

And if you?ve got an F1 question of your own please send them in – you can email me, contact me on Twitter or leave a comment.

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