Prior to the British GP, Eddie Jordan described the McLaren management’s attitude to their current plight in Formula One as “arrogant”. Jordan called for Dennis to step down from his role of CEO at McLaren.
However, Ron Dennis responded explaining again that to win world titles, the Woking team could not rely on being an engine customer of a ‘works’ F1 team. And for this reason they were still ‘happy’ to take the current levels of pain that their embryonic Honda power unit is causing McLaren.
“Is it painful? Of course, but we have to use pain as a motivating force. It’s a challenge but it’s the right challenge because without the support of a company such as Honda, I don’t think it’s possible to win the World Championship”, Dennis told Martin Brundle.
When questioned about Jordan’s comments, a calm and collected Big Ron delivered a stinging assault on the quirky Irish BBC presenter. “I consider Formula 1 a family, and families live in villages. And villages always have a village idiot. He fits the bill perfectly,” Dennis quipped.
In strict terms, ‘the village idiot’ is a person locally known for ignorance or stupidity, according to TheDictionary.com.
Eddie Jordan’s BBC F1 co-presenter has taken exception to Ron’s description. Writing in the Telegraph, David Coulthard remarks: “Eddie is many things but he is definitely not an idiot. Where many others failed he ran a very successful Formula One team and sold it for a considerable profit. I don’t expect Ron to like it but you fight fire with fire. What he’s done is fight fire with insults. It’s difficult to imagine they’re [McLaren] going to make inroads between now and the end of the year”.
Of course since the recent court cases involving Ecclestone, it has been revealed that a significant portion of Jordan’s original ‘fortune’ was from doing the bidding of Bernie Ecclestone and being remunerated accordingly.
But we return to ‘Dour David,’ who is the reason many F1 fans decided to take from behind and pay for a SKY subscription; DD’s impulse to comment on the war of words between Jordan and Dennis appears unnecessary and naïve.
The term the ‘village idiot’ in fact has many layers of interpretation. “It has also been applied as an epithet for an unrealistically optimistic or naive individual” (Siegel, L.J., 1970: The Justifications for Medical Commitment–Real or Illusory).
Eddie Jordan is a self-publicist and lives to create headlines which is hardly the intended modus operandi of the BBC. Coulthard’s naïve interference in this matter will now surely mean the BBC F1 live broadcast will be compromised, as McLaren refuse to allow their employees to speak with representatives from ‘Auntie’.
It could well be that ‘Dour David’ has missed the joke completely. “The concept of a “village savant” or “village genius” is closely related to that of the ‘village idiot’, and often tied to the concept of pre-industrial anti-intellectualism, as both figures are subjects of both pity and derision” (Dols, M.W., 1987: Insanity and its treatment in Islamic society. Medical History 31, 1-14).
Maybe Big Ron was offering a back handed compliment to the no nonsense kind of comment that Eddie Jordan believes he is delivering, when pontificating about all things Formula One.