My thoughts, my life, my world!


Am I really a grumpy old man?

I have been putting this off for some time now as I don’t want to be classed as negative – but – there are wrongs to be righted and I am sure that my views, if broadcast to the world, will be instrumental in righting those wrongs.  Since I have been putting this off, the subject matter is not necessarily too current but I will feel much better having vented my spleen!

First of all, Marco Simoncelli – motor cycle racer of repute – I am very angry about the way that he has been pilloried by the event Stewards, the press and, supposedly, by his fellow riders.  Yes he is a bit wild but all of those who have become successful at the highest level have had to go through the same stage before they matured into the “super-beings” that they are now.  They all still make the odd daft mistake and, I am afraid, that is the nature of the beast.  Marco’s incident with Danni Pedrosa was just that, a racing incident.  Both riders were pushing their luck a little bit and it would have been just as easy and as fair if Danni had backed out of the deal rather than Marco – in my opinion – six to one and half a dozen to the other!  I am sorry that Danni got injured yet again but should we be asking if, with his very slight nature and history of injury, Danni should be riding in the Motogp class?  I am not questioning his undoubted skill in handling a bike, I am merely raising a question as to his physical strength and durability.  Around the same part of the season there was a horrific-looking highish speed accident, in BSB at Oulton Park, where Josh Brooks (and his bike!) somersaulted in a very spectacular manner, which looked as if it would result in serious injury.  When the dust settled, Josh got up, brushed himself down and walked away – don’t get me wrong I am sure it hurt – a lot – but I have the feeling that, under the same circumstances, Danni would not have got up and walked away.

Still on this point, there was an extremely unpleasant incident between Sofuoglu and Simon a few weeks back in GP2 where, in my view, Sofuoglu rode into the back of Simon, in a very dangerous manner, on a pretty quick corner – there was no input from Simon in this incident, he was merely a bystander who was in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Simon was taken out of the race and badly injured – this was classed as a racing incident by Stewards at the event.  In my opinion, Sofuoglu’s attack, on a Simon who was minding his own business, was far far more dangerous than Simoncelli’s coming together with Pedrosa yet Sofuoglu is not penalised and Simoncelli is pilloried.

Now to Formula One Rules!

I have enjoyed Formula One Motor Racing since a very very small boy and, in those years, have seen quite a number of changes – obviously some good and some bad. The last couple of years with double diffusers and f ducts have been bad enough, but this year reaches new hights of stupidity by the so-called “rule makers”.

We seem to have a collection of people making rules who have little, if any, foresight and, obviously less inventive minds than the engineers whose job it is to interpret rules and “get the best” out of them. I guess, however, that if the rule makers were as brilliant as the team’s engineers they would be working for the teams in those very engineering jobs!

I am sorry, but you can’t make up the rules for the year’s sport and then change them part of the way through the season just because the teams have managed to exploit, what may be termed,  loopholes in badly conceived and written rules.  The “powers that be” should be celebrating the skills and inventiveness of these engineers in managing to pick their way through the rules and find ways of maximising the efficiency of their vehicles – not penalising them by making supid statements about illegality of various procedures etc.  These procedures are not illegal at all, it is just that the rule makers could not conceive that these scenarios could or would develop.  If they had just turned round and stated “You lot are damn clever, we didn’t think of that, but we will have to live with it this season – however, we will make sure you can’t do it next year!”  This, however, is too honest and is unlikely ever to be seen as the reaction to such cleverness.

I am also very much against penalising drivers for what can only be termed as “racing incidents”.  Racing drivers are competitive, there are going to be incidents when someone tries a bit too hard and causes a coming together – that is because they are doing their job.  Obviously, if there is a really dangerous situation where one driver has been totally out of order and caused, or could have caused serious injury, something needs to be done – but not for most of the little prangs that occur from two drivers each considering that they have right of way etc.  Paul DiResta still cannot understand his penalty in Canada and neither can I.  The present judgments are probably better with driver’s reps on the stewards panel, but it is still not as good, and consistent, as it needs to be.

I think that is enough of a rant for now – have a nice day!


Escalating event costs

Interesting to see, today, that Turkey is looking seriously at whether it can afford an F1 Grand Prix next year.  It seems as if the asking price is going up from £13m to £26m for 2012.  I know that F1 wants to get as much out of any arrangement as it can, but I do think that some sort of realism is required when pricing an event.  The venue must feel that there is something to gain from hosting a Grand Prix otherwise it is not a viable business deal.  I think the Australians have been considering the situation pretty seriously for some time.

Nothing, however, has changed – it is probably just that the sums involved appear larger.  Some years ago I organised a number of high-profile yachting events and there was always the trade-off between cost and revenue to consider.  Even then, some classes or organisations were pricing themselves out of existence for “normal” venues – the large sums were only available from Asian venues, with bottomless oil pockets, wishing to position themselves on the map or the higher profile and wealthier, and tax efficient, European venues such as Monaco.

For the organiser who is working on behalf of the venue/area/region, there are three types of events – one which brings profile to the area but which costs money to acquire and put on, one which has little or no profile but provides a reasonable income to the venue and, thirdly, the holy grail event which brings both profile and a good income to the venue or the area/region in which the venue is situated. Obviously the organiser would like to get as many of the type three events as possible but, equally obviously, a synergistic blend of all three can work well both for the profile of, and for the revenue to the venue/area/region and is a more realistic target.

I hope, for the sake of all sport and, F1 in particular, that a sense of proportion can be achieved and, what I consider to be unrealistic greed, does not spoil the sports that we all enjoy.  We live in globally strange times financially and what was once the norm can no longer be considered to be so and this must surely be taken into consideration by those promoting sporting events at all levels.

Another great day!

Once again it’s very sunny here on the Isle of Wight – will be off for a ride on my motorcycle soon to make the most of it. My 4 year old Grandson went swimming in the sea today – he said it wasn’t cold – think he must be the toughest member of the family!

I see that Bernie Ecclestone is being questioned by German State Prosecutors -see  German lawyers confirm questioning Bernie Ecclestone – and we hear that Newscorp is rumoured to be interested in F1 now.

I know things move on but, even though I love F1 and have been a motor racing fan since the age of 5, there is now too much emphasis on the business side and not enough on the sport.  The most exciting motor car racing I have seen for years has been at the Goodwood Revival Meeting and generally Motogp and Superbike Racing beats them all!

This is all hard work today – thought I had lots to say but I haven’t really – let’s hope my next post is more inspired.

And to follow…

Here we are with a second post today – am obviously feeling refreshed!

I really enjoyed the Grand Prix yesterday, we actually had a proper race for a change!  I am not a fan of the Jake and Eddie show at all, I find that there seems to be a lot of negative comment about drivers and teams when it is unecessary – poor old Mark Webber is a little behind Vettel and his career is instantly over – the same for Massa compared with Alonso.  I think that both Webber and Massa came good this weekend – not to be written off yet!  I am afraid that the whole show was greatly improved, for me, without Mr Jordan.   And come to think of it – why is Alonso still driving in Formula One – I might be wrong, but from what I gather on the grape vine (and Bernie’s book!) – he should have lost his superlicence some time ago for alleged (and I use the word very carefully) dastardly deeds when driving for McLaren.  Thinking about McLaren, it is good to see Ron attending races again now that we have a new man in the Mosely seat.

I think that Lewis was very unfairly treated at the last GP – quite interesting that the time penalty lost him a place and Alonso just his time which made no difference to his placing at all – I don’t believe that Hamilton deserved a penalty anyway but what ever was awarded should have had the same effective penalty for both drivers.  The way McLaren drivers get treated, I was surprised that Jensen din’t get disqualified for mistakenly stopping in Vettel’s pit!

Felt sorry for Leon Haslam and Eugene Laverty yesterday, but brilliant rides from Jonathean Rea and Carlos Checa – Max seems to have got new life this year as well.

That’s it for now.

What’s it all about then?

After all this time I have now decided what my blog is going to focus on!  I am developing into a grumpy old man so I am going to pass comment on all things that annoy me, all things that impress me, some things in the middle and a number of things that will change when I achieve world domination.

Having said this, my main interests are F1, Motogp, Superbikes (World and British) – I am also into music and I used to earn a crust in Marketing and PR so I am sure most of my opinionated rantings will focus on these subject areas.

Some of my posts you will agree with and some you will not – I can be fairly polarised and have been told that I have an over-developed sense of fairplay – if you do agree with my posted material, I will be pleased to hear from you – if you don’t, I will be equally pleased to receive your comments and we can take it from there!

I think that I have made a big enough effort for today so will leave it at that – they always say that the first line of the novel is the most difficult and this post has exhausted me.  Future posts will be on a much more regular schedule so watch this space!