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“Performance Reinvented” competition winners announced: Driving day awaits
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Posted By: James Allen  |  15 Apr 2013   |  8:42 pm GMT  |  35 comments

Thanks to everyone who took part in our first major competition of 2013: the Shell “Performance Reinvented” competition.

The prize was a big day out at a spectacular venue in London on April 18th, which three lucky JA on F1 readers will attend; with a variety of activities including performance driving with none other than Ferrari reserve driver Giancarlo Fisichella and attending a major event hosted by former BBC F1 frontman Jake Humphrey.

Entrants were asked to define what “Performance Reinvented” means to them in 150 words.

The winners are listed below, together with their entries. They will be contacted directly by email. They will also be invited to contribute guest blogs on this site about their experience on the day.

9. Posted By: hero_was_senna

This is my personal take on Performance Reinvented. Something that happens for every generation.
“From front engined behemoths, sliding through corners in a drift,
To state of the art missiles chasing time with negative lift.
Tyres that had performance of wheels on a horse drawn cart,
Whereas modern fat slick tyres, forever fall apart.
Drivers, though heroes, who’s waist line were best described plump,
Now these modern day athletes sport the tiniest rump.
Engineers who used hammers and screwdrivers for their trade,
Replaced by lab technicians with everything tailor made.
Cars were designed and lovingly built by an artisans heart,
Carbon fibre embraced as the 21st century art.
Fuel thirsty engines giving way to turbo’s running lean
Modern day thinking, all technology has to be green.
Here comes the roar of a turbo, drivers foot to the floor,
Although it’s not the music of a V12 at full bore.
One thing hasn’t changed throughout the years,
This sport can still bring people to tears.”

13. Posted By: Rich Gibbons

Performance Reinvented: perhaps the biggest race day performance gain of all since the running of the first Grand Prix, and sometimes one that is overlooked, is the implementation of the pitstop. From the 1950s when the car was stationary for well over a minute – not quite time for a cuppa and a cigarette, but watching old footage it certainly looks that way – we’re now talking about the possibility of sub-two second stops. Unbelievable!
Not content with just making the cars faster, the teams have been looking at increasing the performance of the mechanics during the stops, with clever innovations on what you would think are simple, fairly passive items: the jack, and the humble wheelnut! There’s barely time for a driver to even spell c-u-p-p-a during a pitstop these days…

45. Posted By: Robin Middleton

My Performance reinvented goes back to my first
time driving on a race track – Brands Hatch:
“First time out at Brands, storming out of Clearways, I hit the straight, focused on paddock hill bend. Wide or tight, which way to go, the instructor is not saying, so I hug the pit wall, like they do on the telly, slam on the breaks, and turn in. The car goes light, I’m fighting understeer, pushing me towards the kitter litter, I hold on but lose bucket fulls of time.
A break, time to refocus, to think and listen to the man next to me, next time round what to do?
Full throttle out of clearways again, go left the wise man says, take a wider line, break earlier, get on the power sooner, the understeer is gone the, apex is touched, the car straightens and before you know it, Druids is in sight.
Performance equals time, my time was reinvented by the wise instructor of the track.”

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35 Comments
  1. Val from montreal says:

    I knew HWS would be accepted …

    Good job ! Lucky guy !

    Congrats Hero !!

    1. hero_was_senna says:

      Thank you Val.
      I’m really looking forward to it. You have no idea.
      I have followed Ferrari all my life, chatted to the team mechanics at the Grand Prix’s and at Goodwood.
      One year at Goodwood, I was with my wife and daughters, and a couple who were friends of ours. I spoke to the engineers in Italian and they invited us into the motor home on the condition we took no pictures.
      Our friends were astonished and many people in the crowd believed we were the teams friends. But all I had done was chat to them in Italian.

      I met Ayrton at Silverstone in 1991, during the tyre tests and could barely speak to him, I was so in awe.

      This, in a motorsport sense, is going to be the best day of my life. When I read my name as a winner, I was shaking. Hope my words do the emotions justice.

      Thank you James and panel for choosing me.

      1. Anne says:

        Hey congratulation!!! Enjoy the experience with the Ferrari team. And don´t forget to tell us all about it.

        :)

      2. Iestyn Davies says:

        Congratulations! :)

      3. Scuderia McLaren says:

        Congrats HWS. Excellent post (the other two were great as well). Am so happy a true Ferrari fan will enjoy this. Can’t wait to read about your exp.

      4. Emofan says:

        Congratulations Hero, I just know this prize was a dream for you,and could not have gone to a more passionate Ferrari fan, hope you had a good day.

      5. hero_was_senna says:

        Thank you for your kind comments. Thank you to everyone, it was an amazing day. Jake Humphrey, Gianmaria Bruni, Davide Rigon as my co pilot in an Abarth 595 and a passenger ride in a 458 with Fisichella.
        I practised my Italian with them all which seemed to surprise them, lol nibbled on gourmet food and nearly threw it all up in the simulator! More of which in my blog.

        I would like to personally thank James. Also Grace, Fiona and Mary from Edelman, who were an absolute joy to chat with. The crew that ran the simulator and the boffins from Shell who made petrol exciting.

        I’m working on my blog and with luck will see it on the site soon

  2. Wayne says:

    Congratulations guys, looking forward to your post telling us all about it!

  3. Seán Craddock says:

    Great prize! I wish all three winners the best of luck! :D

  4. Randy Torres says:

    James, I’m wondering what percentage of your resdership is American based, especially now with Austin and possibly Jersey? The reason I ask is because it would be great to run one of your contestas for fans in the US/Canada/hell, even Mexico! We await your kind consideration with baited breath!

  5. AndyFov says:

    Congratulations winners! Have a great day.

  6. "Martin" says:

    Congratulations to the winners !

    Now: Women in F1 !

    What everyone has forgot is that back in 1930′s
    a Czech lady Elizabeth Junek has competed in GP races in her husbands Bugatti (she was faster then him :-)
    She come 2nd in a Targa Florio, just about the most dangerous race circuit there ever was…,
    how about that Sterling Moss ?
    Compared to that, current F1 is a walk in a park.
    Regards,
    “Martin”

    PS.
    James, sorry about hitching this thread, maybe open a new one?

  7. Sebee says:

    Hero…you had me at generation!

    So poetic.

    I have a feeling you will soon be driven around by Fisi. Don’t be shocked, he’s quite short. But a very very nice guy.

    I ran into him once in Indianapolis Mall. He was in a NASCAR MotorSport store looking around for some gear. Store was packed with shoppers, no one even recognized him. After we chatted a bit and took some photos with us people started asking who he was. In a MotorSport store, no one knew him!

    1. hero_was_senna says:

      I’m not Wordsworth or Keats, but I’m glad you liked it.

      I met Fisichella when he drove for Jordan and was always “appy”. Nice guy.

      I’m currently in two minds about whether to take my old race helmet, so I can be photographed in the simulator and tell my grand kids about when I drove for Ferrari…

      It’s 1am and I’m not capable of sleep just yet. Then again 4 espressos since I read my name haven’t exactly calmed me down.. ;)

    2. Val from montreal says:

      If americans in the States barely recognize Schumacher while he’s road-trippin’ down there in Texas , how would you expect Fisichella , of all people , to be even noticed ??

      Kim Kardashian has’nt got that problem however !

      1. hero_was_senna says:

        Remember that, he was on holiday with Verstappen as well. Didn’t they go to a NASCAR track day and queue up with others to go round the track. He even took instruction from the tutors who didn’t know anything about his day job!

      2. Sebee says:

        Hope my praise didn’t jinx you hero! Sorry you didn’t win it.

      3. Anne says:

        You are right. Several years ago I was in the US. I was having a chat with one guy who was working as a drivers teacher with youngsters to help them to pass divers test. At some point I mentioned Schumacher and the guy didn´t know who he was.

      4. Sebee says:

        The reasons why I found it funny was:
        It was Indianapolis – motor sports town USA.
        It was F1 GP weekend. 4th time F1 was there.
        It was a Motor Sport gear store – while mostly NASCAR and Indy, it had an F1 gear section.

  8. PB says:

    HWS, very well written and well deserved! Look forward to your blog from the raceday experience..

    1. hero_was_senna says:

      Thank you, I hope I can do the event justice

  9. mhilgtx says:

    Congratulations to the winners. I enjoyed reading all the post.

  10. Lou Madjeric says:

    Hi James,

    I would like to ask two questions:

    1. Chinese Grand Prix – 1st Alonso (World Champion), 2nd Raikkonen (World Champion), 3rd Hamilton (World Champion), 4th Vettel (World Champion), 5th Button (World Champion). Five World Champions in the field and they fill the first five places. Has this ever happened before?

    2. I like the radio transmissions between the drivers and their pit crews but I often find them hard to hear. The commentators frequently comment on these transmissions, but if I haven’t heard them clearly, I struggle to understand the comments. Could we have the commentators (usually Martin Brundle) repeat or paraphrase the message before commenting on it, please?

    Many thanks,

    Lou Madjeric

    1. James Allen says:

      I’ll have to check statto for the first one.
      I agree about the radio messages, Some are hard to hear but they are very important for the story of the race. On BBC Radio 5 Live Gary Anderson and I always repeat the message or the gist of the message before commenting

      1. Ian says:

        “This is only the third time this has ever occurred: the other occasions were in 1977 (Jones, Lauda, Andretti, Hunt and Scheckter) and 1985-1986 (Mansell, Rosberg, Piquet, Senna and Prost). Note that at the time, Scheckter, Andretti, Jones, Mansell and Senna were not World Champions, meaning that the 2013 Chinese GP has a first!”

        plagiarised from the comments section of http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2013/04/15/2013-chinese-grand-prix-stats-facts/

        I love JAonF1 for the articles, but imho F1F is the place to go for stats and facts.

    2. Galapago555 says:

      Regarding your second point, I follow races on Spanish TV and many times the radio message is barely audible or even they are not broadcasting because of commercials, so I read them from two sources:
      - via iPad official Live Timing app (they write a shortened version of the message), and
      -(probably the best one)via twitter following @F1PitRadio

      1. Galapago555 says:

        …And of course, huge congrats to the winners!! Enjoy your prize, we do envy you!!

  11. Mon Pen says:

    Shocking to award a prize to someone who can’t even spell “brake”.

    1. Briggykins says:

      Also, I’m interested in the ‘kitter litter’ :)

  12. Robin Middleton says:

    Wow I won, excellent stuff, my time at Brands Hatch all those years ago was worthwhile then, even if it taught me not to become a racing driver – no talent!

  13. Rich Gibbons says:

    Chuffed to have won my second JAonF1 competition, thanks to James & the panel. Looking forward to meeting HWS and Robin… oh, and Fisi too obviously!

    1. hero_was_senna says:

      +1 looking forward to meeting you both. These comments section can get quite passionate but I think the people here are amongst the best I have ever encountered.
      Kudos to James and the team, brilliant work everyone :)

  14. AndyFov says:

    I’m pleased you had a great day.

    It looks like the simulator is featured in this BBC video piece, here:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-22218163

    1. Rich Gibbons says:

      Yeah, BBC transport correspondent Richard Westcott kept us waiting for ages before we could have a go, grrrr!

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