Daily News and Comment: Tuesday 2nd June 2015


A Daily Round up of Formula One news, inside whispers, opinion and comment. Today,

Local residents display a lack of interest in the 2016 Azerbaijan GP

Senna sale goes unnoticed

Silverstone record crowd expected

Local residents display a lack of interest in the 2016 Azerbaijan GP
In just over a year, Formula One will debut in Baku, Azerbaijan. Yet at present, the residents know little about the upcoming race and the question is, will there be much interest from F1 fans in travelling there?

Korea was a brave new land that Formula One sought to conquer with its 3 day spectacular, but Yeongam proved to be somewhere few people fancied visiting. Even the local nationals failed to get the F1 buzz, and the event was cancelled after four years of a seven-year contract.

Arif Ragimow, General Manager of Baku Grand Prix Limited and Chairman of the future European Grand Prix was asked whether the interest was building in his country for the upcoming F1 extravaganza due in just 13 months. He replied, “Frankly, at the moment the race is not getting a lot of attention”.

Bahrain has a dubious human rights record and has failed to attract big numbers of visitors form outside the country during its 12 year tenure on the F1 calendar.

The Azerbaijani government’s poor record on freedom of expression, assembly, and association dramatically deteriorated during 2014. The World report states, “The authorities arrested dozens of political activists on bogus charges, imprisoned critical journalists, broke up several peaceful public demonstrations, and adopted legislation that further restricted fundamental freedoms.

This crackdown was the backdrop for the October 2013 presidential election, in which incumbent President Ilham Aliyev was re-elected for a third term with 84.5 percent of the vote.

The government continued its urban renewal campaign in the capital Baku, forcibly evicting hundreds of families without adequate compensation. Torture and ill-treatment persists with impunity.”


Senna sale goes unnoticed

Ayrton Senna is considered by many to be the greatest F1 driver of all time. Performances  like in Monaco 1984 and Donington 1993 served to establish Senna’s reputation as an extraordinary driver.

Yet despite his 65 pole positions, 41 victories and 3 F1 drivers’ world title, there are those who know not of the great man.

A property was recently sold in Norwich that Senna had rented in 1981 three years before he entered Formula One, but it appears the estate agents did not know this fact.

Senna’s name was not included in the offer documents, and the property achieved its asking price of £215,000.


Silverstone record crowd expected

Formula One may seem to be dying a death in Germany, just 50,000 attended last years event in Hockenheim and the 2015 race has been cancelled. Yet Silverstone, under new management, is going from strength to strength.

Advance ticket sales have raced ahead over the past six weeks and are now 95% sold.

This year, tickets have been made available to ensure families can afford to attend the race, without blowing the equivalent of their budget for a week’s holiday in Spain.

Extra stands have been erected in the Beckets Maggots area and an enormous 150,000 are expected to attend the race on Sunday.

The previous Silverstone management had restricted the attendance numbers on Sunday to 125,000 following the catastrophic weather in 2012 – which saw fans told not to turn up. Car parks were flooded, cars mired in the mud and the campsites were turned into boggy nightmares.

Since then, investment has been made to provide more hard-core ground based parking facilities and the park and ride capacity was doubled.

Patrick Allen, Managing Director of Silverstone commented, “Thanks to recent pricing initiatives and opening up the event to make it more affordable for families we are now almost full. Demand has been tremendous and we are 95% sold and predicting that 2015 will be a record-breaking crowd.”


27 responses to “Daily News and Comment: Tuesday 2nd June 2015

  1. According to the BBC, Donald MacKenzie, chairman of CVC, is responsible for the possible return of refueling in F1.
    Jeez, that’s just what F1 needs, and richer trainee Dwarf poking his nose into stuff he knows sod all about. What next, will his missus be suggesting colour schemes for cars? His teenage son designing tracks?

    • Well, let’s no complain; after all, the teenage son might do a better job than Tilke. Simply randomly putting together track parts from the track kit will probably generate a more interesting track than Tilke’s latest efforts.

  2. That’s great news for the British GP however………from further reading and management change at the top I get the impression that the circuit is still on shaky ground. Even with these numbers it is hard for a track to make any profit from an F1 event. As per some brill writings on this site we know how much FOM charge to allow the GP and with those figures I just don’t see how a profit is obtainable.What’s your take on this judge?

  3. If he only rented the house (surely short term) over 20 years ago is it really a selling point?

    I’m not sure I’d buy a house for that reason – especially in Norwich!

    • Right, who, if even possible, would go back through a list of tenants when selling a fairly modest house? It is highly unlikely that anyone still resides in the immediate neighborhood who would have lived there during that time. Again as you mention, if it was short term and before he was in F1, he probably wouldn’t be remembered unless he caused problems.

  4. ” Ayrton Senna is considered by many to be the greatest F1 driver of all time.”

    “Yet despite his 65 pole positions, 41 victories and 3 F1 drivers’ world title, there are those who know not of the great man.”

    Michael Schumacher has 91 (or 92?) race victories and more than twice the amount of world titles. Poles mean nothing when you cant convert on sunday. The great MSC knew that. There is a reason Max Verstappen is called the new Senna; they don’t want to call him the next Schumacher just yet.

    ***************Yes, this was provocative. I’m a little bored.****************
    Relax, I wont post this under a Senna video on Youtube. I don’t think Google would appreciate all the moderation needed to clean up the backlash.

    • At last, a provocative post to instill some life into the site.

      A general comment. In the past, the majority of news was under the Daily News banner. Nowadays, it seems that this site is moving towards a James Allen-like site with Daily news becoming less and less frequent and with less and less important news. I prefer how it was in the past, the majority of news under each day’s banner. Too many frequent posts pushing each one further down doesn’t do for me. Plus in the past there was more debate and comments under the daily news. It was the ‘go to’ place for me every morning.
      Just my preference really.

    • And who calls max the new senna? Only the dutch press, I guess. And maybe that is because the new Schumi already exist and is driving a ferrari at the moment.

      • Helmut Marko called Max the new Senna and Martin Brundle said the kid showed all the hallmarks of a Senna or a Schumacher. Funnily enough in the Dutch press it was reported that Marko and Brundle uttered those words and sometimes they refer back to those remarks but not as often as I had expected. They more frequently refer to the remarks made by Jan Lammers (F1 driver in the early 80’s) and Tom Coronel (WTCC driver).

    • well, when commenting the race on rtl, lauda more or less said “this was paddys fault” and questioned his leadership. according to him, it was an issue of “too many cooks” and lowe should have put a stop to the discussion and made a decision but didn’t. he also said this was a recurring problem at mercedes and needs to be solved, basically hanging paddy out to dry.

      • I don’t get Lauda’s drift. Paddy ain’t Team Principal; Toto is, sort of. Why would Paddy take these decisions in the heat of the race?

          • Well, the “business” angle is quite effectively Team Principle. At McLaren in times past it was Whitmarsh Team Principal (dealing with the “business” angle) and Lowe Technical Director (locked away in an office looking for other ways to make cars unreliable). At Ferrari, too, Marlboro Man deals with the “business” angle and with Bernie, whereas James Allison keeps hacking at finding a way to get closer to those Mercs. Looks like a relatively widespread way to structure the team, but each time it’s the guy dealing with the “business” angle who is ultimately responsible for strategy cockups, NOT the technical guy.

            As for Niki, can’t see any contribution for him in all this other than talking bimbo, resident attack bulldog and team whipping lash whenever things go the other way…

          • Makes sense.. hard to tell who does what at Mercedes, are there three team principals, Niki basically says what he wants.. etc. haha.

    • One person’s gloom is another person’s joy. The German demographic is heading exactly where Bernie wants it; old and feeble, but able to afford a Rolex.

  5. Best not to compare Azerbaijan to Korea. The Azerbaijan GP has prime location, such as it is; Korea decided to place a GP in the middle of nowhere far from the main population center (Seoul). Korea is an economic powerhouse based on industry and knowledge; Azerbaijan is another extraction economy. Korea is a vibrant young democracy; the Azeri government ….

  6. @Judge13 and the team.

    What’s really happening at Manor? Is Bob Bell at Manor just a bargaining chip being used by Renault to force the hand of Lotus, Red Bull etc? Manor become Mercedes B team?

  7. I do not get how a Central Asian or Transcaucasian, predominantly Shia Muslim and Turkic speaking country that’s not a member of EU and is bordering with Iran is selected to host the “European GP”. Even geographers cannon agree between themselves whether the three Transcaucasias countries, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia, are part of Europe. According to the fairly dominant view, the geographic border of Europe ends at the North Caucasus mountains, which excludes all of these countries. According to the second definition, the border between Asia and Europe in that region is at the Aras river, separating Azerbaijan and Armenia from Turkey and Iran. Even if we accept Azerbaijan as a “European” country, just barely, it’s not clear why it should be awarded the title of European GP. This GP sounds as absurd as North American GP held in Guam.

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