No idea how she got my number, but there she was. Said she’d watched our Tea Party from her house, and that it was really time for us to Man Up. Apparently she couldn’t bear the sight of two dozen manly men, huddling under umbrellas and waiting for the rain to stop in order to go about their business.
Ms Palin, I said, first of all it was not a Tea Party. It was a race. A Formula One Grand Prix at that. And second, it was in Korea. I don’t think you could see it from your house, because Japan is kind of sitting in the way.
“Mr Ecclestone,” she says. (I hate it when people call me that. It’s either Mr E, or Bernie if I know you.) “Mr Ecclestone, don’t try to catch me out like all those socialist media wussies. Many tried and it’s getting old. When I say I can see it from my house that’s proverbially speakin’. And what I do see is what your people say on Twitter. Or actually, my people see that. I try to stay away from it because by gollie, there’s always sumtin’ going wrong when I do it myself.
“And I’ll be gosh darned if I’ll Continue reading
Many people in the Hungaroring paddock ask me what I think about the latest aborted attempt to get a US team into F1. I have only one answer to that: what attempt?
This Cypher Group or whatever they’re called not being able to rustle up the necessary capital tells me that there’s still a shred of common sense among US investors. Who in his right mind would dump countless millions into an outfit that sits thousands of miles away from the necessary technology and know how to get a proper F1 racer on the track?
But Bernie, I hear you say. The United States are a technologically advanced country. Surely they have all that’s needed to build race cars?
Well, they may have it but they’re bloody well not using it. Their main series still races with carburettor cars. Carburettors! Outside the US, Africa and some parts of Southeast Asia nobody under 35 has ever seen one. OK, I’m forgetting Russia. It’s an engine technology that dates from the 19th century, which makes it even older than me. Nobody, or nothing in F1 should be older than me.
And why do NASCAR prefer carburettors? Because it’s easier to regulate. Thing is, some of their biggest races are on ovals, where you don’t need to actually drive a car. You just need to propel it with great speed along a pre-determined trajectory, so all that matters is engine power. Try to imagine, outdated race cars with Vietnamese suspension hurtling along a giant oval with speeds of up to 200 miles an hour. NASCAR’s answer to this is restrictor plates. It’s a metal plate with holes that you stick in the middle of a carburettor. Who needs high-tech when you can get away with power tools?
But the thing they fear most is Continue reading
… For defamation. Excuse me? How do you defame someone who’s deliberately crashed an F1 car in order to fix a race? Good luck with that one. Losers.
One thing is certain. The Piquet pair won’t have any trouble proving reputation damage: it seems the only series that would accept young Nelsinho was NASCAR Pick-up Trucks. Pick-up trucks? Would these include overhead shot gun racks? Truck antlers, perhaps? Tells me once more that Americans are capable of anything. The land where reality beats fiction.