16 Mar 2015

Australian Grand Prix-reflections

Well the Australian Grand Prix played out exactly as predicted-see previous post.It was a procession and the two Mercedes dominated from start to finish.Yawn.Sebastien Vettel was third in a Ferrari which must have been a relief to him and Ferrari as they both had a horror season in 2014.The Red Bull cars were way off the pace.Local Aussie hero Daniel Ricciardo was lapped by the two Mercedes.The McLaren Hondas were even slower.Jensen Button's fastest lap was 5 seconds slower than the winner's,Lewis Hamilton.As a motor race it was a disaster.For many of the teams it was worse than that.
But Bernie Ecclestone doesn't care a fig and neither does CVC his private equity partners.They collected the race licence fee-rumoured to be more than A$15m- from the Victorian state government .The total cost to the Victorian state government of staging this year's race is reported as A$60m.Think what that could do -renovate a few schools or build a new wing on a hospital.
BE and the folk from CVC probably sipped vintage Krug whilst thinking "thank you mugs"as they trousered the fee and probably did not even bother to watch the race.Way too boring and not as exciting as counting their money.
There are a few old men the world would be better off without-Ecclestone,Blatter,Mugabe and Murdoch spring to mind.
The organisers claimed a record attendance for the race but they are not a reliable source.They are always on the front foot trying to justify the economic benefits of the race so their figures are always suss.The fact that Ricciardo was expected to be amongst the front runners definetely helped the attendance as did the very pleasant weather.
Anyway a photo taken by me at the 1981 Italian Grand Prix at Monza on the Saturday before the race on pit lane.The Ferrari mechanics working on their V6 turbo -same configuration as this year-but no sealed engines and silly rules.Spanners to the fore for those guys and no closed garages and security guards- more a case of "come and have a look fans".Yes things were better then-a lot better.

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