Sunday, May 16, 2010

It's Time My Friends... Monaco

The race in Spain stays mainly with Australian.

Last race was interesting for two reasons.
The Brawn Team redesigned their car to better fit his driving style and he out qualified his team mate for the first time this year and finished 4th.
Secondly, the combined psychic power of the spanish people forced Lewis Hamilton off the track and nearly exploded Vettel's brakes, giving Alonso second place.

Mark Webber wins.  Alonso comes second with a wounded Vettel third.   Racing goodness.


Absolutely one of my favorite tracks.  Not so much for the racing, as there is little passing and actual racing going on.
But for lack of a better word, the event itself.  They (who wrote the book of "it")** refer to the Formula One Grand Prix de Monaco as the Crown Jewel of Formula One.  A rather insightful metaphor as, much like any remaining monarchy, the track is fat with anachronism.
  • It's a street race.  Bumpy and dirty with oil, antifreeze, transmission fluid and any other number of things that might leak or be thrown out of a car.
  • It's narrow.   So narrow that most passess will be done in the pits.
  • It has the tightest radius corner of any race in the sesason.   So small that the teams build special suspensions just for this race to allow the front wheels to turn farther than normal.
  • It is technically demanding.  The cars are set with a much higher downforce than normal (some are at maximum) so they can negotiate the almost constant turning.  Drivers require 100% focus at all times.
  • Tall concrete barriers make this a lot like a torpedo run on a Death Star.  The main difference is that those guys only had to run in a straight line.  Well, that and nobody is shooting at the drivers.  Still it's pretty dangerous.  Did I mention it was narrow?
  • It's incredible demanding. Retirements come from going slightly off course or brakes failing.
  • It's an excuse for extravagance and pagentry that would normally irritate me with the attempt at significance.  Somehow they manage to make it cool.   Here is a perfect example.  (Thanks Tim for the link)

The only driver to have won this race 6 times, Ayrton Senna.
The first turn of the first lap is always a good time.

We're watching it today.   I know this is short notice but sometimes that's just how it works out.

** Atributed to Mike Gilbert expressing disdain for those who argue with only talking-point knowledge of the subject instead of actual knowledge.  At least that's my interpretation.

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