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Good Week/Bad Week
Good Week/Bad Week
Posted By:   |  08 Apr 2009   |  6:52 am GMT  |  121 comments

I don’t know about you, but I need some light relief after all the heavy duty stuff about McLaren. Here’s a review of the week’s winners and losers.


Good Week for:

Nick Heidfeld – Gambled on only one pit stop in Malaysia and got a podium. Though short, he now stands above his highly-rated team mate in points table

Timo Glock – The gambler of Interlagos does it again, but this time it has no effect on the outcome of the championship. Glock shows he’s a canny racer.

Brawn GP – We now know just how fast this car is when pushed. Button’s fastest lap in Sepang was almost second faster than rivals. Get working, lads.

The English language – Eddie Jordan demonstrates its versatility on TV. Words can be put into any order, with or without verbs.


Bad Week for:

Evening race starts – F1’s sketchy understanding of geography shown up again as an evening monsoon, predictably, douses the Sepang track. Race abandoned.

Martin Whitmarsh – two races in to his dream job and it’s become Nightmare on Elm Street. Will he actually be garotted on April 29th, or merely flogged?

Ferrari – The team which seemed to have forgotten how to lose… has suddenly remembered again. Full wet tyres… on a dry track?

Honda – the boss who decided to quit F1 is now sitting in a bar, comparing notes with the man from Decca Records, who turned down the Beatles.

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Sorry that something went wrong, repeat again!

I have just worked out that the rear wheel hub covers which I previously thought were not covered by the regs, are in fact illegal.

3.15 Aerodynamic influence :

With the exception of the cover described in Article 6.5.2 (when used in the pit lane), the driver adjustable
bodywork described in Article 3.18 and the ducts described in Article 11.4, any specific part of the car
influencing its aerodynamic performance :
– must comply with the rules relating to bodywork ;
– must be rigidly secured to the entirely sprung part of the car (rigidly secured means not having any
degree of freedom) ;
– must remain immobile in relation to the sprung part of the car.

So if they are not brake ducts but to help smooth the airflow they must comply as above including being rigidly secured to the entirely sprung part of the car, which obviously they are not.
Also – must remain immobile in relation to the sprung part of the car. –Which again obviously they are not.


The multi-personality coverage is really great though, as is, FOM’s new graphics and LG TV segment at the post race press conference. Very much what Sky Italia has been doing for some time. It’s a breath of fresh air, if sometimes aromatic.


Good points all around. 🙂

On the commentary side, the pitlane reporter Lee Mckenzie, is so flat and depressed sounding. Albeit an improvement from last year, it wouldn’t hurt is she stopped trying to sound so cool and unaffected and reflected the vibe of the pitlane.

Nevertheless, it’s all early days, and I’m sure somebody over there is reading these comments, so time will tell…



A good week for the english language now that it’s not being mangled by Mark Blundell?


“Timo Glock – …….but this time it has no effect on the outcome of the championship…..” who knows?????

Any chance Honda will now inject $$$ into Brawn and start again next year??? instead of sitting in the bar 😀


Once again those incisive details only an insider can provide come to the fore.

I’m never sure if this blog is or


Actually, I was surprised to see the EJ quips because I thought it was one of his relatives. A certain M. O’Derator…

Anyway, I am afraid that a lot of people are missing the point. Mr. Legard is a professional commentator and has been doing it for some years. Trouble is, he is a football commentator and probably has little, if any enthusiasm for F1 whereas with Murray and James to an extent, you always got the trousers on fire commentary. Ask yourself this question – would you want to hear John Motson commentating on F1? Peter Alliss?

Somebody above gave a good suggestion – watch the grid-walk and then go red button to the R5 Live commentary. You lose Brundle but gain Davidson which is a pretty good exchange. In the meantime, I suspect the status quo will remain for this season but hopefully they will change it – James, you busy in 2010?



Hope the Honda bosses don’t have a “tanto” around.


Great observations, may I add though:

– Honda (Brawn) would not be where they were with the Mercedes engine;

– EJ, as annoying as it seems, he does know what he is saying;

– Martin W has always been the sort of chap whose eyes are always looking in opposite directions;

– Ferrari has always liked to do it the dramatic way;

– Sketchy as the race was, it was something different.

Look forward to China. Cheers!


For those whining about BBC consider this.
– Had ads.
– No practice sessions.
– No FTA Onboard channel.
– No Classic F1 races/highlights ever shown.
– Had cheezy montages / amateur video editing.

– No ads.
– All practice sessions shown.
– FTA onboard channel.
– One voted classic BBC highlights shown for each round where available plus 5 minute edits shown of other race candidates.
– Take F1 coverage seriously.


I think that, on the whole, the pundits and commentators have been very good so far, Legard is the weakest link – I sense a kind of awkwardness between him and Brundle, but I’m sure it’s nothing.

Jake, David and Eddie have been very entertaining in my opinion.

Also, well spotted by whoever noticed that Heikki hasn’t yet completed a lap.

Kudos to Mr Allen for a entertaining and informative blog which I have only recently discovered.


simon, you say that EJ and legard can’t be expected to be any good after just two races. but humphries does ok, and it’s almost universally accepted that davidson is superb and DC is also a very good addition.

with regard to heidfeld, he’s easily good enough to win a race, he didn’t get on with the tyres last year, and his highly esteemed team-mate only managed to luck in to a win once during the season. he’s a very solid strategist and time and again ends up where he shouldn’t be through making the correct split decision calls and looking after his tyres. he’s also one of the best drivers for overtaking ability. i think once the diffuser situation is cleared up he’ll be challenging at the top and will get at least one win this year.


Breaking news, in future all Silverstone and/or Donnington F1 races will start at 20:30 so as to catch the more important far eastern markets who run adverts during the coverage. Also annoying football style electronic rotating adverts will be placed on all conveyor belt siding.
All transport to the car parks cease at 22:00 due to PSV driver’s hours. All cars in the car park will be ferme until the race result has been changed by the stewards the following day.


Well if he signed the Stones all is forgiven!


Though short, he now stands above his highly-rated team mate in points table

Unlike US presidential races, in F1 shortness is actually an advantage (nice quip, though!). Webber and Kubica might be in trouble once everyone start using KERS…


Does anyone think Heidfeld will ever win a GP?

He holds some not so promising records at the moment.

1) Most podiums with a victory. (Joint with Stefan Johansson)

2) Most 2nd places without a win.

3) Most starts out of drivers in the current F1 field without a win.

4) Most points without a win.

If he does eventually win a race he would break Barrichello’s record of winning after the most attepts, Barrichello won on his 123rd try.

But at the same time he hasn’t really ever threatened to win one, maybe apart from Montreal last year when Kubica beat him.


James, I love the reason for writing this article, and yes we do need a bit of light relief – the Badger thinks along a similar vein and here’s our latest in our series of F1 Top Fives – The Badgerometer – Malaysia Top 5 – enjoy!

Ps. loved your Honda analogy!


I have a sneaky suspicion that Honda may try and make a comeback next year 🙂


“Honda – the boss who decided to quit F1 is now sitting in a bar, comparing notes with the man from Decca Records, who turned down the Beatles.”

If it was not for Brawn, Toyota would have won in Aus, and came within a lap of winning in Malysia

Think how bad Honda would be feeling then.


Firstly, James, congrats on a superb blog site. I must confess to not being your biggest fan from the ITV days… I even own one of ‘those’ t-shirts!

You really have found your niche with this though. Someone with your level of contacts and connections gets us some superb news & gossip directly from that paddock and hospitality villages. So, all in all, a good week for you I would say.

The BBC have been doing OK so far. You can see the effort they have put in from the off and I think it’s fair to expect the presentation to need a few tweaks.
Legard… I’ll hold judgement for now and give him a bit longer to adapt. He needs to hurry up with it though.

Bad week?

It has to be EJ. After the cringe-worth interview with Bernie I just want the dwarf off my screen! I thought MB used to have a little “ex-driver chip on his shoulder” but EJ is obviously still feeling a bit aggrieved at not being directly involved any more.

Also, does anyone find it amusing how comically short he is compared to JH & DC?!


I can understand your wife’s feelings but disagree with your opinion on the cars’ looks. I think they look great, they remind be a bit of days gone by.
Which brings me to this: i watched the race on sky italy and before that they showd the 1973 season. Which is the year I started watching F1. Wow, they were all sideways, cars looked totally different one from the other, it was really something.
Brawn gp in its white livery reminds me of those days a bit. But some things will never come back.
There was a fab sequence where a very young Mr Williams says to his driver (cant remember who now…) “don’t worry, we’ll put these tyres on now. They are really good, they’ve only done 50 laps. And any way we’ve no money to get you a new set.” FANTASTIC!


could someone please tell me where i can watch the gp2 eurpoe this season??please please please!!!


Look this ‘we love James’ sentiment is really getting on my nerves and spoiling this website. Can people stop going on about how the BBC is rubbish and how James Allen would make it so much better? I’m not one of the crazy people who always complained about his commentary, and I think this blog is very good, but I don’t feel the need to mention it every two minutes.

And for the people who are constantly having a go at Jonathan Legard and Eddie Jordan- be patient. Can you really expect them to be perfect after two races? Surely it makes sense to reserve judgement until later in the season. I really don’t think you’re any fairer than the people slagging off James on the forums in the last few years.


Good week for Jake Humphreys who finally proved he can do grown-up TV as well. Good week for Martin Brundle winding up the Toyota mechanics on the grid. Next week Martin – jump in one of the empty cars and push some buttons and see what they do!

Bad week for Jonathan Legard. My wife walked into the room and said “I did not know you were watching football”. About the ultimate insult I guess – his commentary style is too football and does not credit us with a), being able to see the pictures and b), having brains of our own. Yes, we know it is about to rain… come back James, please…


And also, yes – Legard is nowhere near comparing to James Allen.
JL – “Oh, he went off again!!!”
MB – “That’s a replay…”
JL – “Oh, yes…a replay!!!”

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