While testing continues in Jerez it’s increasingly looking as though US F1 won’t be racing in F1 this year. Here’s the Thursday round-up:
The death of Olympic athlete Nodar Kumaritashvili in the luge event in training for the Winter Olympics has brought safety standards in that sport into question. The two figures from F1 criticising the safety preparations on the luge track are Max Mosley and Jackie Stewart – two people not well known in F1 for agreeing with each other.
“The F1 meeting alone generates close to $600m in direct and indirect business for the economy, equivalent to about 3 per cent of the nation?óÔé¼Ôäós gross domestic product, official data say. ‘What is really encouraging is that the government has become totally focused on using the Grand Prix as a platform for doing business,’ says Martin Whitaker, chief executive of the international circuit. ‘It might not be the Davos of motorsport yet, but there is nothing to stop us aiming for that.'”
With British F3 champion Jaime Alguersuari already in F1 and last year’s title-winner Daniel Ricciardo impressing in the young drivers’ test last year, this is an important championship to keep an eye on for emerging talent. I’ll be making my annual trip up to Oulton Park for the season-opener in April – leave a comment below if you’re going to be there too.
Comment of the day
This comment from DanThorn sent me on an instant nostalgia trip:
I used to have a clip of [the three Jaguar sportscars crashing at Jerez] on a 1987 VHS ?óÔé¼?ôCar Wars?óÔé¼?Ø. I can?óÔé¼Ôäót find anything online, but there are a few copies of the video knocking about on ebay if you really have to see it.
It?óÔé¼Ôäós been years since I watched the video but from memory there are a few clips of Formula Ford races featuring stars of the future, like Damon Hill, Bertrand Gachot and Roberto Moreno. Might dig it out again actually…
I had the same tape – I was probably about six or seven at the time. It was just video of cars crashing but it also helped me discover other racing series besides F1 like F3 and touring cars. Did anyone else have it?
Big thanks to Ed who’s been helping me with some of the technical problems remaining from the recent server move. The character encoding problem has been largely fixed although there are a few manual changes I need to make to finish that job.
We’ve also made some progress on the forum problem and will hopefully have it back next week.
Today’s birthday wishes go out to _Ben_ and Mike – happy birthday guys!
On this day in F1
Today is Enzo Ferrari’s birthday – if he were still alive today he’d be 112! His only living son is Piero Ferrari, who has been vice chairman of Ferrari since Enzo’s death in 1988.