“Notes: Very, Very Lost in Monza”

Getting lost in an unfamiliar park following a day at the races is far from ideal, especially when evening shadows collide with lingering darkness. In theory, navigating one’s way out of Monza should not be unfeasible and yet, it was a feat managed with indelicate ease. It did not take long to become very, very lost.

“Colton Herta, Red Bull and the Re-Invention of Super Licence Qualifiers”

In the unlikely event Colton Herta earns a Super Licence dispensation from the FIA, it would prove an interesting workaround for an unintended consequence. It may even force a badly needed re-evaluation or even dissolution of the entire Super Licence Points System, although without some humility, that change is unlikely. While it may have had … Continue reading “Colton Herta, Red Bull and the Re-Invention of Super Licence Qualifiers”

“Alonso, Vettel & Piastri: Making a Story Out of a Story”

Pulling enough interest out of the recent Sebastian Vettel/Fernando Alonso and Alpine/Aston Martin story to keep one awake was tricky business. Until Oscar Piastri blew French waters apart. “Jesus, this is a tepid stuff.” In the aftermath of Sebastian Vettel’s retirement announcement and the post-Hungaroring revelation that Fernando Alonso was moving from Alpine to replace … Continue reading “Alonso, Vettel & Piastri: Making a Story Out of a Story”

“Daniel Ricciardo, Tangled Webs, and the McLaren Conundrum”

A heady mix of a highly regarded and expensive, yet struggling driver, alongside the availability of a cache of youthful exuberance may be about to give McLaren a headache – albeit a good one, on the surface. But are the options available as refined or as speedy as the incumbent? “We ultimately just weren’t quick … Continue reading “Daniel Ricciardo, Tangled Webs, and the McLaren Conundrum”

“Notes: Paid Extras”

Sometimes, paying above the odds will get you extras that will take you beyond your rivals. It may not always be fair, but it rarely ever is. "It wasn't unusual for some additional one-upmanship to occur behind the scenes [in junior formulae]. Even though all drivers could pay the same amount of money to teams, … Continue reading “Notes: Paid Extras”

“Actions and Consequences – for Juri Vips, Nelson Piquet Sr and everyone else” (updated)

Juri Vips’ actions during a live streamed gaming session resulted in his immediate suspension from Red Bull Racing activities, including the famed junior team. And rightly so. But how does one respond when one of the sport’s most respected members also commits such actions?

“The Joy and Realities of Crohn’s Disease, Amidst Thoughts for Jonny Edgar”

Become a Patron! When news broke that Red Bull junior driver Jonny Edgar was being forced to sacrifice his Formula 3 campaign with Trident due to his worsening Crohn’s disease, a very real pang of sympathy came across me. And I should know all about it. It’s been here with me for over thirty years. … Continue reading “The Joy and Realities of Crohn’s Disease, Amidst Thoughts for Jonny Edgar”

“Guess Work is Not Good Work, Even If It Makes Sense”

At this juncture, as of 10am on Wednesday March 9th, 2022, it can be confirmed that Pietro Fittipaldi has not yet been confirmed as the replacement for the dumped Nikita Mazepin at the Haas F1 team. In fact, nobody has. Not that one would get that impression from many of the popular outlets online. There is an issue of trust when it comes to reporting news or updates, but all too often a thrust through one’s timeline ends up being a doom scroll through a field of copyists and guesswork. Even before Mazepin had been dropped by Haas, there were rumbling stories that Fittipaldi was to replace the Russian, but none of these stories were based on anything remotely solid. There was certainly nothing that one could reasonably use as a back-up for a news story.

“Cowering Under the Hard Dark Light of Money”

Formula One takes the money and hides and when the time is right, it adopts the right words and the right pleasantries, but struggles to match those words with action or authority. As I write this, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is delivering his best lamentable efforts in Prime Minister Questions and it reminds me that at a time of great horror, the world continues to play politics, as if it is a board game. Yet actions have consequences and the deals we do or are done in our name have consequences too. Our world spins upon the colour and scent of money, but in the end, money dripped in blood is still money. The value, however, is tainted forever.

“When Race Control Becomes the Story, Then the Story is Wrong”

There is a drastic problem eating away at the forefront of motorsport, particularly Formula One. Recent seasons has seen the narrative of numerous Grand Prix move from the track to that of Race Control and that is an issue that threatens to undermine the integrity of the sport. It is difficult to pinpoint exactly when … Continue reading “When Race Control Becomes the Story, Then the Story is Wrong”

“The Filth and The Fury: Thoughts on Desert Finale from Afar”

The conclusion of Sunday’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix left a sour taste in the mouths of many Formula One fans – particularly those who follow Mercedes. But it really did not have to be this way. From a very distant London, there was a very real sense of bewilderment as the chequered flag dropped at … Continue reading “The Filth and The Fury: Thoughts on Desert Finale from Afar”

“Does media criticism of athletes have any useful basis if it comes from a non-professional?”

Recently, I asked a sport psychologist this question: 'In terms of criticism from the media that athletes do face, so does it have any useful basis if it comes from a non-professional?' "Possibly. I think having context of the sport can be helpful, because you can relate to some of the experiences and build that … Continue reading “Does media criticism of athletes have any useful basis if it comes from a non-professional?”

“Dignified Online? Oh, Come Now, we are Not Children”

The tight battle between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen for the 2021 Formula One World Championship is growing in intensity and with it, the heat builds among rivals. But the animosity between the fanbase overshadows even the rivalry. There is little doubt that the promoters of Formula One, Liberty Media, are rubbing their hands with … Continue reading “Dignified Online? Oh, Come Now, we are Not Children”

“Psychology in Motor Racing and the Need for a Mental Toolkit”

The global focus and expansion of motorsport and the pressures that it brings are leading competitors to talk more about mental health in the sport. And yet, it is still seen as a taboo in many areas. In an excerpt of a conclusion from a study soon to appear in World in Motorsport, Leigh O’Gorman … Continue reading “Psychology in Motor Racing and the Need for a Mental Toolkit”

“Rich Men Dine on Cognac, While Children Die. But This is Not War”

It only takes one minor slip to end it all, after which silence caresses and thoughtful mourning begins. Again and again and again. One of the common tropes that always crops up when those in racing are killed or suffer injury is the same old mantra of "motor racing is dangerous, it says so on … Continue reading “Rich Men Dine on Cognac, While Children Die. But This is Not War”