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  1. #1
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    anyone else find F1 boring?

    im starting to like touring car racing more, Im tired of seeing the same guy on the top of the podium every week. Mark
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    the point of the sport is technical innovation

    and perfection. you are witnessing the sport at its best. well, actually not at its best. but this is how the rules allows the sport to be. no evening out the playing field b/c some teams are too incompetent or too lazy to produce the same quality, high performance machines that others do. ferrari is at the top for a reason, as is michael schumacher. you put everyone in the same car and schumi will still win the championship. he might not dominate every race. but he is a better driver than everyone else at the moment. mentally and physically


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    Re: anyone else find F1 boring?

    The F1 races can be somewhat dull because of the lack of "over taking" at times. However, I find there is room in my life for both sport car racing and F1. I particularly like the Speed World Challenge because there is only one class of car on the track at a time and the racing is aggressive because the races are short. I did not like F1 as much before because I didn't know anything about the teams or the drivers. Once you start to understand the intrigue and the some of the more technical aspects of F1, it gets more interesting.<html>
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  4. #4
    Steve Walsh
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    Jeremy Clarkson (Top Gear magazine) on F1

    From The Sunday Times


    BMW 645 Convertible: Even Ralf could drive this


    By Jeremy Clarkson


    When you go to a grand prix only one thing really matters. What sort of pass
    you have dangling round your neck. I went to Monaco this year as a guest of
    Jaguar, which meant I had two passes: a green one which afforded me entry to
    their caravan in the paddock, and a silver one which allowed me into their
    hospitality unit above the start/finish line.


    Unfortunately, to get from one to the other I needed to cross a footbridge,
    which meant I needed a red pass, and red passes are only allocated to really
    important people who have liveried shirts and serious faces. You see someone
    with a red pass dangling among the medallions and you know they’re better
    than you.


    People with red passes have the swagger of 19th-century butlers. These
    people are allowed upstairs into the drawing room and as a result they sneer
    at the dishwashers with the green passes. And the only comfort we can take
    is that while they’re allowed over the footbridge and into the drawing room
    they’re not allowed on the grid after the cars have lined up at the start of
    the race.


    To do that you need a track pass and to get one of those you need to be
    mates with Bernie Ecclestone.


    This year at Monaco, Bernie’s mates included Lionel Richie, Roman Abramovich
    and, for some extraordinary reason, me. This meant I could go on the
    footbridge. And from there I could look down on the Gordon Jacksons.


    It also meant I was on the start line as the drivers climbed into their cars
    and started their engines. And as a result of that, my views on motor racing
    have changed for ever.


    As a spectator at events in the past, the most exciting thing had been the
    pass round my neck. At home, watching it on TV, the most exciting thing had
    been the adverts. But here, on the grid, the atmosphere was so electrifying
    the air felt almost solid.


    The only place you’d find pacy breathlessness to rival this is in an MTV
    video. And the only place you could find such a dazzling array of primary
    colours is in a seven-year-old’s pencil case. Then there was that primeval
    Jurassic howl as the V10s roared into life. I whirled round and round
    thinking: how in God’s name can they make this so dull and anodyne on
    television?


    Part of the problem is that the people who run the teams and organise the
    events and drive the cars are always there, live, as the race happens. So
    they never actually see just how stupefyingly dull this sport can be for the
    folks back home.


    They have their read-outs and their strategies and they can see that their
    man is gaining on the chap in front as each lap slides by. So they must
    think when the race is run, “Wow!” But we cannot see all these things on
    television. We only see the cars going round and round and then we nod off.


    There must be a way of capturing the crackle of excitement I felt in Monaco.
    I refuse to believe that these extraordinary cars, and the brave young men
    who try to tame them, cannot become a Michelin three-star feast of
    excitement on the electric fish tank.


    People have made cooking exciting. They have made other people moving house
    exciting. There is even a programme about dirty carpets which attracts a
    quarter of the total viewing audience every time it’s shown. So don’t tell
    me that a Jaguar doing 200mph inches from a Ferrari’s gearbox is dull.


    One of the things I’d do is ban stewards’ inquiries. After every incident,
    accident investigators sit down and study videotape to see who was to blame.
    Er... this is motor racing so no one was. Ever.


    Two weeks ago Takuma Sato did his best to liven things up at the European
    Grand Prix in Germany by diving down the inside of Rubens Barrichello’s
    Ferrari. Happily, the two cars touched and the Japanese driver was forced to
    pit for a new nose cone.


    It was a brilliant speck of chilli in a sea of wallpaper paste. But far away
    in the commentary box, James Allen and Martin Brundle told us it was a
    silly, impatient, reckless thing to do. What? Are they mad? Do they want to
    kill the sport? If I’d been in that commentary box I’d have been on my feet
    bellowing with excitement and calling for Sato to be knighted, or gutted, or
    whatever it is they do to heroes in Japan.


    I fear today’s observers are too close to the action. They are afraid to
    criticise drivers because, as we keep being told, they all sleep in the same
    hotel and give one another lifts to the circuit in a morning. They also know
    that if they criticise the sport itself their beloved passes will be taken
    away. Fine. Commentate from home. But give me the dirt. Give me a bad guy.
    Give me someone to hate. And you can start with Ralf Schumacher.


    Just because his brother is the greatest driver of all time does not mean he
    ’s even half way competent, or else why not have the news read tonight by
    Huw Edwards’s sister?


    Ralf is paid £7m a year by the BMW Williams team and I cannot remember
    seeing him overtake anyone, ever. He just cruises around at the back,
    getting in everyone’s way until he has a Reginald Molehusband accident. He
    pulls into the pits when there’s nothing wrong with his car. He brakes far
    too early for corners. And he has a face you’d never tire of punching. The
    only thing in F1 that’s uglier is that walrus-toothed car he drives.


    It makes my blood fizz that there’s a brilliant young guy called Anthony
    Davidson trying desperately to get a drive in Formula One. But he can’t get
    one because that sour-faced ape is in the way.


    I have a great deal more to say about Ralf and many, many plans for
    rejuvenating Formula One racing, but I’m afraid time is tight and I really
    must move on to this week’s car. The BMW 645Ci convertible.


    I’m not a fan of the hard-top version because it has awful seats, a terrible
    driving position, a nasty ride, a useless satellite navigation system, an
    ugly backside and, if you go for a manual, a dreadful clutch. I’d rather
    spend £6,000 more and buy a proper sports car like a Porsche 911, or a
    proper GT car like a Jaguar XKR.


    But it’s different with the convertible. You can’t have a Porsche with no
    roof because you’ll look like a homosexual, and you can’t have a drop-top
    Jag because the hood looks like it’s been made by Millets. You could have a
    Mercedes SL, of course, but the dealer will be rude and for this sort of
    money it’ll have the same sort of engine they put in a motorised pencil
    sharpener. As a result it will only do 4 mph.


    Sure, the new BMW convertible is still riddled with the faults that plague
    its more solid sister, but it’s rather elegant to behold and as a result it’
    s a nice place to be. What’s more, with the roof down you can actually hear
    the 4.4 litre engine making V8 noises as you accelerate.


    It handles with much finesse and steers well, too, but it’s more a cruiser
    than a B-road barnstormer. I suspect BMW’s idea of the ultimate driving
    machine is far removed from mine. As is their idea of the ultimate driver.


  5. #5
    AndyO
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    Kinda Agree

    With what your saying.

    MS won't win in another car instantly, but he would be competitive, and the best thing is, he can COMMUNICATE with his entire staff on what's need to be improved. Wether that staff can pick-up the baton and do it is another question.

    Were pretty fortunate to watch MS.

    F1 to me is fascinating.

    BMW Williams fan, but Renault and BAR have done a good job and McLaren won't be down for long, and Toyota is tired of their results. Eddie Jordan, Sauber and Minardi, I give them credit for the humiliation they go thru, let alone the $$$

    Speedchannel guys do a good job, and I like the 30 minutes B4 each race when their walking amongst the teams and highlighting the top stories.

    Yes, I like F1, that's why I wake up on Sunday mornings at 5:15 AM here on the West coast to watch it LIVE!!!! even though I can watch at 6 or 10PM taped.
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    Yes | No

    Great article!!!!


  7. #7
    Jim Derrig 93 750
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    Yes

    Some sports writer recently wrote that there are more lead changes in the Rose Bowl parade than in the typical F1 race. This is particularly true this year, with Ferraristone all dominant.

    Many contrast F1 with NASCAR. To me, F1 is to NASCAR like soccer is to basketball: There will never be a lot of scoring (passing). However, there is good soccer and bad soccer, and right now F1 is like a soccer league where one team wins all the games 1-0, with the opposing teams never even getting a shot on goal. In other words, duller than dirt.

    It all comes down to money, of course. Ferrari outspent everyone and now they're at the top. Some people applaud this as "greatness" of Ferrari and Mr. Shumacher. I just see a sh*tload of $. Yawn.

    The money wins races because it buys advantages. The only way to defeat this mentality is to cut down on the number of advantages that can be bought. This doesn't mean a pure "spec" series like NASCAR, but it will require more spec'd areas. This is where Max is heading, and I have to agree with him.

  8. #8
    Jim Derrig 93 750
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    oh bull . . .

    If F1 was about tech innovation, there wouldn't be 20+ pages of technical regs (read: technical restrictions). Name one significant technical innovation which has come out of F1 in the past 10 years.

    F1 in its current state is not about technical innovation. It is about pouring gobs of money into finding ways around esoteric technical regulations in order to gain a few hundredths of a second here and there, and none of these engineering solutions have much if any application to anything outside of F1.

  9. #9
    AndyO
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    Marlboro

    Jim, I agree about the $$$$ Ferrari works with.

    I wonder who will pick up the sponsorship when Tha Marlboro deal expires?

    And will this new sponsor(s) cover the current budget?

  10. #10
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    look, if you dont want to watch the sport, DON\'T.

    the sport has a lot more to offer than passing. yes, ferrari spends a lot of money. but they also work harder than other teams do. take a look at mclaren. they wasted a lot of their preseason and some of the season on the opening of their new facilities. did ferrari do this? NO. if and when they do open a new facility, they will plan everything out so well that it will not take anything away. their priority is to win races. that is all. they work their butts off to be the best. i think last year or two years ago, barrichello crashed in practice and pretty much wrecked the car. the team was able to work thru the night and rebuild the car by qualifying so that he could keep his main chassis and tub. they are the best at what they do and that is why salary and budgets are so high. you don\'t pay the best in the business the least in salary. to me, ferrari seems a bit like audi in endurance racing. those who work the hardest reap the biggest rewards. audi in 2001 i think at le mans, changed out their tranny in about 30 min or so. i dont remember the exact time, but they had it down to an exact science if each specific part on the car broke they knew exactly what to do and how to do it. practice, practice, practice. they have a track at their facility which allows private testing. they use it for a lot of their testing. i myself am not a 100% ferrari fan. i used to be more of a mclaren fan but i lost interest when they hurt themselves last year by using a year old car to defend for their championship. now, im more of a b.a.r. and minardi fan to tell you the truth. the dedication they put in is unbelievable. bar is finally reaping the rewards of their hard work. if bar didnt have honda engines for free, they they would be a different story. minardi just keeps trying and trying. paul stoddart is one of the most respected men in the paddock and by me. they actually had chances to do much better but they keep getting killed by engine manufacturers. when turbos was in, they had a crappy turbo b/c that was all they could get. right now, they are using cosworth engines that were not build for an entire weekend\'s use.

    one of the reasons why ferrari is doing so well is due to michael schumacher. he is absolutely the best driver in f1 and he just keeps getting better. he is better both mentally and physically. he qualified 7th at his very first race for jordan back in 91 at spa but DNF due to mechanical failure. people knew that he would be great when they saw him. he just has \"it\". as for the technical side. schumi brought over some of his engineers from his championship benetton team. ross brawn and rory byrne came with michael to ferrari. (sounds a bit familiar to something that just happened over at MotoGP, right? rossi leaving honda to win again at yamaha and bringing over many of his honda team) rossi is still the favorite to win this year b/c he is the best rider out there even though he doesnt have the best bike. yet.

    jean todt won championship in rallying before moving over to f1. he knows how to organise and to lead his team.

    the ferrari team is exactly that, a team. everytime michael talks about HIS wins or HIS losses, he uses the word \"we\". we won this or we won that or we have a bit of work to do. he is the 2nd best team driver ever. the 1st best is michael\'s teammate barrichello, b/c he has a car that can challenge michael but respects the overall team performance hopes not to. if you look at races which rubens has won, he has dominated the entire weekend. not because michael wasn\'t performing well, but because when rubens is on, he is almost impossible to beat. he is better than michael, but michael is much much more consistent.

    this is not the first time a team has dominated before, this is the first time a team has dominated for this long though. the reason why i think it is the first time it has lasted this long is due to OTHER teams dropping the ball. that is all i have to say about this.

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  11. #11
    SN Rollins
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    The best driver is not MS..

    How many people has he passed in a race besides back markers or RB. MS knows how to be out front and be fast enough to stay out front. All the other drivers, especially JPM, know how to overtake for positions. IMO MS would not win a race in any other car. He doesn't have that edge that he used to have. JPM tends to drive by the seat of his pants too much. He knows how to go fast, he knows how to pass and handle the car, he just doesn't total fine tune the car to get the most technical advantage out of it. Also, it's a new car. It's ugly, but it's starting to come around.

  12. #12
    Jim Derrig 93 750
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    Re: look, if you dont want to watch the sport, DON'T.


    actually, I like the sport and I've never said Ferrari is not a great team.

    But you have the cart before the horse. Ferrari did not get great and decide to spend money. Ferrari decided to spend money and got great doing it. they outbid Benneton for the shumacher-brawn-todt trio. They build lavish new facilities. They can collect all that talent because they have the most $. Sort of like the Yankees.

    And I don't find such results particularly exciting or admirable. To the extent it give one team a talent monopoly, it makes the overall sport boring due to the lack of competition. And hey, its not like the Yankees are all from New York or the Ferrari team consists of Italians who worked their way from sweeping the factory floor up to team manager. These people are a bunch of free agents who went to the highest bidder.

    I recognize that speed costs money and this all is a part of auto racing, but that doesn't mean I have to like it.


  13. #13
    Jim Derrig 93 750
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    Re: Marlboro

    It's a great question and I have no idea what the answer is. As tobacco advertising has become more and more restricted, F1 teams profited because they were one of the few remaining outlets. And this influx of money certainly has been a contributor to the somewhat insane level of R&D/testing currently seen in the sport. Now that tobacco ads are becoming banned in Europe, Canada, and the US, the tobacco companies probably will move out of F1. This might be one reason why cost cutting measures are being discussed.

  14. #14
    AndyO
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    Pre-BMW

    williams had a big tobacco sponsorship B4 the BMW marriage. "Winfield"

    Look who BMW has brought in:
    COMPAQ then HP and rumour is they may land HSBC because HSBC pulled out of Jaguar for 2005.

    Jordan is the team that will be scrambling because of the Benson and Hedges is 90% of their sponsorship.

  15. #15
    AndyO
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    Good summarry

    Jim, hit the nail on the head, with Yankees analogy and the mix of non-italians.
    German Driver
    Todt French
    Brawn English
    Globalization I guess.

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    Toyota reportedly spends more and they suck

    It's not just the money Ferrari has, it's a maniacal dedication to absolute perfection and a dream team of folks with the same attitude.

    The last few F1 races have had enough wacky hijinks to be interesting despite the lack of competition, but I must admit to fast-forwarding over chunks of them. Sometimes the best part is the banter between Hobbs and Matchet(sp?)!
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    Hobbs cracks me up with his quips. He'll sometime

    s say something irrevelant or wrong, but he's always entertaining. My favorite is him calling Alonso, Fred. 91 325i "Cashmere"
    69 tattered and hailstorm dented 1600/2002 "Reno"
    Racing is life. Everything before or after is just waiting."

  18. #18
    CSL
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    Yes. It's been that way for the last few years.


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    he is far and away the best OVERALL driver in f1

    no one is better than him in term of setup, communication, and getting the most of the car. you don\'t really see ms overtake b/c he works so hard at qualifying and setup that he doesn\'t have to. put him in a bar and he would still win. almost any other car and you would have a great on your hands. just as long as someone like fisichella or raikkonen or trulli was in the ferrari as well as barrichello.

    dont be like a red sox fan.

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  20. #20
    Jim Derrig 93 750
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    I agree . . .

    . . . that money doesn't GUARENTEE success. Heck, look at what just happened to the LA Lakers. All those superstars and they lost 4-1. Wasn't even close.

    Me, I don't like "dream teams." Indeed, dream teams usually are formed because a deficiency in the sport's rules allowed one team owner to buy up all the talent. If the purpose of the sport is competition on the field, then dream teams are detrimental to the sport. In the long run, all that a dream team shows is that victory can be bought, if the sport's rules allow it.

    Success WITHOUT money is rare indeed, and that is not what we are seeing in F1 right now. If the Ferrari team was pulling a "Jordan in 1999" and competing for the front despite being a few hundred million behind in budget, that would be something to cheer about. But the most you can say about their current success is that Ferrari has a big pot of $ and they have spent their money very well. Whoopee. You can say the same about Walmart.

    Certainly the fact that Ferrari has been in F1 since its inception, and the fact that Toyota is a 3-year old team started from scratch is one of the reasons Ferrari has done better. And Ferrari accumulated its present talent over many years, while Toyota pretty much was limited to whatever was available on the market when the team was formed. I mean, its not like they chose Panis over M. Schumacher :)




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