London GP: Ecclestone says the race is off that was never on. London – city or Olympic Park http://www.cityam.com/sport/central-london-grand-prix-says-ecclestone. I love how he then goes to great lengths to explain why it would be cost efficient and a great idea though. Maybe this undying enthusiasm for pointless ideas and lost causes is how Mokpo not Seoul ended up with the Korean GP (South Korea, Ecclestone and The Emporer’s New Clothes)
Tooned: is cancelled due to Lewis leaving the team – so for the rest of this year at least. Would love to see it return with Jenson and Perez next year. Perez character could be based on being a relative of my childhood favourite cartoon, Speedy Gonzales, a very very fast mexican mouse. For those of you who’ve never had the pleasure…(YouTube). If you enjoyed that and want a free box set worth of them…(YouTube). More importantly Tooned is a way of attracting kids interest in F1 and was a good idea. I think they should just do a best mates breakup story about Lewis and Jenson anyway. My best mate aged 22 didn’t speak to me for a year – its life.
thejudge13 ditches SKY: As I confessed on Sunday, my love affair with SKY is suspended, if not over (My Johnny Herbert rant). Rant about Herbert over, I was intrigued to see today’s offering from SKY Sports F1 who headline the race review, Sky Sports F1’s Martin Brundle reviews an absorbing Korean GP. Really Martin – not sure we watched the same race. Anyway comments from Martin as examples of the ABSORBING viewing we all had, “[Massa] genuinely faster than team-mate Alonso in the race but had to hold station…It was rather static up front… Red Bull are very much back in dominant form”, I’ll give him this one though as I tweeted this sentiment live, “Hulkenberg’s double pass on Grosjean and Hamilton… one of the moves of the season”. The reporting of Grosjean and his alleged 7 first lap ‘at fault’ incidents and rant by Herbert smacked of lazy and ill-considered reporting. It’s as though there is an attitude amongst some of the Sky team that they can just ‘wing it’ because they’re invincible. Why the SKY race review is only published on a Tuesday lunchtime and doesn’t mention THE single most influential factor on the race – defeats me. Maybe the long first class trip home was too tiring; but failing to mention the enormous effect the terrible marshalling had on the race (marshalling ruins another race) is both negligent and sluggish reporting. (SKY race review)
Mallya: Thejudge13 did a piece on the crumbling finances and massive debts (c $5bn) of the Vijay Mallya empire (Force India: How the card tower will collapse) and today breaking news appears to provide some sort of solution to his problem. Diageo (ironically a McLaren sponsor) are to buy the one profitable part of the Indian entrepreneur’s empire, United Spirits. United Spirits own the brand, “Whyte and Mackay” one of the Force India team’s main sponsors along with Kingfisher. Mallya has fought Diegeo’s advances for nearly a year however the debts have been escalating and he has been forced into this action to raise some cash. The terms of the deal appear to be quite a shock, as it was previously thought Mallya would be able to retain management control of the business but this is not the case. The roles with the real power, CEO and CFO, will go to Diago appointees whilst Mallya remains as a figurehead chairman (IBNlive.in).
Ferrari confirm Massa: Short sharp and to the point, “Scuderia Ferrari announces that it has renewed its contract with the driver Felipe Massa to the end of the 2013 race season. The Scuderia’s driver line-up for next year is therefore made up of Fernando Alonso and the aforementioned Felipe Massa. (Ferrari.com) Is that it Ferrari??????? We have speculated for days, for months even about your driver line up. Was it to be Webber then maybe Hamilton, Perez, Di Resta, or Hulkenberg. We even dared to dream it could be once last romantic reunion with Schumacher and then just about anyone else that can hold a steering wheel. Fan against fan, publication against publication in heated debate, coded words from the Godfather about ‘too many roosters spoiling the hens – Hundreds of millions, maybe billions of words written and read – and we get this?
Jackie Stewart and the BBC: It seems like I’m down today on the established media, and trust me I can’t be doing with closed-minded band waggon mentalities – like Grosjean bashing, but Andrew Benson has just posted his 3rd missive from Jackie Stewart in just 13 days. We first had “Schumacher retirement long overdue – Stewart” (4 Oct), then “Stewart offers to help Grosjean (read Grosjean needs me)” (9 Oct) and now “Vettel is not yet a great – Stewart” (16 Oct). I suppose after yesterday’s tip-off/unspecified source/Vettel will join Ferrari fiasco, allowing Jackie Stewart the platform today is a safe bet for the BBC. Whilst that may be the case, I’m finding the Stewart grandstanding lectures a little wearing. (BBC). Stewart is arguing – until Vettel wins in an inferior car he cannot be called truely great. But to be honest this debate, ‘best car/best driver’ is like the old Byzantine theological argument, “how many angels can dance on a pin head”. We never see the same driver in a rival car – and even if we did he would need the same amount of track time in both cars to provide a proper comparison of each vehicle. All we have is the best driver from one team car measured against the best driver from another team car. The relative difference between the two is a comparison of the combination of both driver and car. Who can say more? And this is part of the mystery of F1 we all love.
(This page will be updated with further stories throughout the day – check back later)
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