F1 – Brazilian Grand Prix – Season Finale!!

17 races, and it all comes down to this…
one race…
winner potentially takes all.

I’ve missed a good portion of the grid walk as I was enroute to The Kings Arms in Oakville to watch the race with a bunch of like minded folks! It really does make the whole experience that much more enjoyable. So I’ve spent the entire grid walk being introduced to people and catching up with others. (it’s like my own personal grid walk!) There is no wifi signal here, so I will blog along and post afterwards.

And just to keep things interesting, mother nature dumps a giant bucket of water on the track. Seriously. Skies opened, drenched the track, then stopped just prior to the start. LOL!

Apparently Lewis doesn’t have to “wish his girlfriend was hot like..” a pussycat doll as he’s dating the head doll… Is this new? Funny how we’ve never seen her in the pits until today… I predict lots of shots of her looking concerned. (why do women at F1 races dress like they are going clubbing??)

Here we go kids…. wow… I’ve not been this nervous for a start in a long time.
Green, green, green!

Clean start, Massa gets a good jump, Alonso had a shit start. Piquet and Coutlthard get together at the back of the pack, putting an end to both their days, and a sad yet almost poetic end to David’s career. Good thing he got special dispensation to run that livery that none of us got to actually see except spinning in circles while crashing…

Dry everywhere but turns 2 & 3 according to Alonso. Wow… the elevation changes on this track are quite pronounced.

Lap 58/71

Nice bit of dicing between Alonso and Kovalainen! Wow! Wish we saw more of that, and more consistently in this series. (is it because the tracks are so fricken long that we don’t get any real close racing?)

A bunch of cars came in for pit stops and a change of tires as the track

*********

Ok… It was at this point that I decided I could no longer live (well… not so live now) blog. Too much was happening on track and I didn’t want to take my eyes off the action for a second. Lots of slipping and sliding and dicing. The track still had some wet spots, so there was a lot of breath holding for a couple of laps. Add to that the fact that I was in a bar with a bunch of people, so there was the added distraction of many conversations.

So… looking back over the race from there…
Vettel was definitely racy and could have been the biggest spoiler of all.

Kimi did what he needed to do as a good teammate (betcha he’s pretty sick of playing the supporting role) holding up Hamilton and Trull coming out of the pits after their first stop until Massa, Vettel and Alonso were comfortably by. (thereby dropping Hamilton down to 6th) Seriously, have you ever seen anyone drive that slow exiting the pits???

It was kind of boring in the middle section of the race. Massa was clearly going to be the winner and Hamilton was comfortably up to 4th. I think we saw maybe one pass. Oh and Trulli had his “paybacks a bitch… bitch!” moment with Seabass. (good on Seb for somehow keeping the car right and getting back on track)

Then with about 17 laps to go the skies started to darken…
It’s funny, we all started to shift in our seats, some of us moved to different parts of the room, and the conversations suddenly became louder and more animated. The whole bar was watching on about 5 TV’s (including a movie screen) with the sound coming through the main speakers.

Will it rain or won’t it? Will everyone take on rain tires or won’t they? There was a lot of gambling going on at that point, and it looked like Massa was going to take the biggest gamble, but he waited for the right time to take on the rain tires and got back out in front.

Then it all started unraveling. Glock, who opted not to take on rain tires was now suddenly factoring into the outcome of the championship. Kubica became racy all of a sudden, getting into a battle between Vettel and Hamilton. Suddenly, with 3 laps to go, Hamilton was in 6th watching his championship drive away from him. Can Glock keep it together and be the spoiler?! Talk about tension! And we were on board with Lewis the whole time. (at this point I was on my feet, pacing) (I do that a lot during these nailbiter ones)

Final lap. It’s dark now, rain is falling, Massa has won the race (did we even see him cross the finish line?) but all eyes are on the battle a few cars back. Glock bobbles! Hamilton gets around him! The championship is his! WAAAAAAAHOOOOOOOOO!! The bar erupts into cheers and applause!

The celebration in the Massa garage has come to a gut wrenching halt! OH the gutted expressions! you just know they had told the poor bugger that he was the champion then had to renege about 50 seconds later.

oh LORD! What a way to end the season!

1 point! 1 fucking point!!! Hamilton lost by that singular evil digit last year, and won by it this year. Vindication? for sure. Of course we all know that there should have been a few more points in there. (actually, the boy should have won a few races ago…)

It’s pandemonium on the pitlane. Honda is having a Car-B-Que (break out the smores!), two cars away Lewis is desperately trying to re-attach his steering wheel to his car. (lest he give the FIA any possible reason to penalize him that one precious championship point) Finally, he gets to walk away and find his crew and family and celebrate! (the best part about not being on the podium, he doesn’t have to go through all the fluff)

The skies are about to open again. It’s so dark now, it looks like a night race. The trophy ceremony looks like it’s happening in a hurricane. Felipe is doing everything in his power not to collapse into a sobbing heap. Can’t help but be gutted for the little guy. He was pure class in the post race conference. Perhaps he will be the one that repairs the reputation of Ferrari. I would root for him based on his attitude and personality, but the fact that he drives for “them” prevents me.

The broadcast comes to a screeching halt and we have seen and heard exactly NOTHING from the new champion. WHAT THE FUCK SPEED??? You couldn’t take a few extra minutes and join the 5hr Napcar preshow in progress??? This is the youngest world champion in F1 history and we don’t get to see him hoist a trophy or say a few words? EPIC FAIL!

*note to Versus: See how F1 just ripped off all of their fans by robbing them of the final celebration of the season? DON’T DO THAT next season to IndyCar fans. Thank you*

Turns out I had reason to cheer for the little guy in red today. I pulled his name in a blind draw prior to the race and won the pool!! $100! (that comes in especially handy when you’ve been out of work for over a month) So, thank you to Massa and Ferrari for paying for my groceries this month! hehehe.

And with that, race season has officially concluded. (I really couldn’t give a flying fuck who wins “the chase”) I guess now we go officially into silly season, which for the first time will not include the months of “merge” speculation.

I’ll probably live blog the A1GP races, just cause. LOL! And I’m sure there will be plenty of speculation and gossip to keep the conversations going over the winter. If y’all have any suggestions for discussion topics, let me know. If any of you know of anyone who’s hiring, let me know. πŸ˜‰

OK… going to try and find some post race coverage on Youtube…

EDIT: OK… found the last couple of laps. (still no post race interviews…)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nkdvj42Ss54

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14 responses to “F1 – Brazilian Grand Prix – Season Finale!!

  1. Heh, it’s interesting to see F1 referred to simply as ‘this series’ and compared on a like for like basis with other types of racing. Over here, and in many other places, F1 IS racing. Everything else is just a supporting act – whether they like it or not.

    I’ve enjoyed your perspective this year.

    I think Hamilton’s girlfriend has been in the pits once or twice before though I couldn’t tell you where.
    Topics: I plan to do some top ten lists, a discussion of ITV vs BBC, and generally note-take the F1 testing and launch season (Jan-Feb). Not sure if that’ll stretch to a couple of posts per week.

  2. LOL! I’m sure that is true.

    I guess in the U.S. it’s the same thing with NASCAR. You say you are a race fan or a motorsports writer and people automatically assume you are referring to the N word. Everything else is foreign to them. Sadly, with the proliferation of NASCAR into the Canadian market, and the depletion of open wheel (both CC & F1 now) the assumption of Nascar = racing is growing here too. blah!

    Thanks! I’ve certainly enjoyed your perspective too! This was my first full season of following F1.

    I always felt it was too much about the cars/technology, and not enough about the drivers or their skills, and that was of no interest to me. The tide began to shift last year which prompted me to attempt to pay attention this year. I therefore felt much more invested in by the end of the season. And I’m totally looking forward to next season now!

    Ya, I saved my post season report card posts for the actual off season cause I wanted to have something to talk about leading up to spring training. I’ve got a few other ideas knocking about in my addled brain… hehehe

  3. I got my crying in this week, lol. First sadness with that Greg Moore special you posted a few days ago now the thrill of seeing Hamilton win the championship. I did a patented victory yell when I saw him pass Glock. I just couldn’t believe it. Either way, someone was going to lose in a heartbreaking fashion. To give you a sense of how tense I was during the race, I lost count of where the cars were in relation to pit stops even while I had T&S up on the computer.

    As for Massa, that can’t feel good at all. Talk about conflicting feelings. If he did win the title, it would have been cool just for the resulting celebration that would have happened at the track, lol. Gracious interview from him.

    Can’t wait for next season. πŸ™‚

  4. Either way, someone was going to lose in a heartbreaking fashion.

    and therein lies the kicker. had it been kimi or Alonso, it wouldn’t have resonated so deeply. But Massa is like a little teddy bear, with those big sad eyes. It was killing me!!

  5. I thought today’s race was amazing. This was the most entertaining F1 season I’ve seen in 20 years, with a Grand Finale that was better than anything Bernie could have imagined. Quite an improvement from years past. Almost on par with the types of battles we used to see in CART all the time…:wink:

  6. hehehe Mike! (shhhhhhhh don’t say that too loudly, you’ll upset the pompous F1 fans!)

  7. That was an interesting race……….that last lap at Interlagos had to be worth the price of admission alone; congrats to Hamilton on winning the championship.

    On the other hand, you gotta’ feel sorry for Felipe Massa; he crosses the finish line winning the race, thinking that he’s the WDC…..only to come back around on his cool-down lap and find out he didn’t become the WDC.

    All-in-all, it was a great F1 season and it’ll be interesting to see what happens next year.

  8. I was yelling at my TV when Vettel got around Hamilton. I though McLaren was stupid for playing it so close. Then when Lewis caught the Toyota and the they said it was Glock I was screaming a different tune. I can’t recall the last time I was as excited about a race. I’m sure not since CART. Wow! Maybe F1 will be the next CART! πŸ™‚

    Felipe has improved so much over the past few years. I think he’ll have a good shot at winning next year depending of course on how the new cars shake out under the new rules. I’m sure it was a difficult day for him. He handled himself so well. He definitely earned my respect.

    I think we can officially declare the days of Schumacher over. Next year there will be several drivers in contention for the championship. Next year may be the most competitive season of F1 that I have seen. Alonso is coming on strong. Kubica is closing in. Massa is ready to take the championship. Lewis will be back to battle. Kimi hopefully will be back on form. Vettel will be working to secure a seat at Ferrari. Personally I think Vettel will get the seat before Alonso. It’s going to be good.

  9. Ah, who cares if a few primadonnas get their haughty feathers ruffled? Everyone knows that CART was the vastly superior series, perhaps the best the world ever knew, or will know.

    (The crackling sound you hear is the fuse burning. *snicker*)

    Oh, btw…congratulations on the C note for your blind pool. Every little something helps, yeah? I’ll keep ears open on your behalf…not that I hear much of anything anymore, but ya never know.

  10. I like the cars/technology! I can’t understand why an anti-socialist nation is so obsessed with giving equal equipment to everyone in their racing series.

    On the other hand it works the other way, F1 2000-2004 was boring as hell, total Schumi/Ferrari domination, yawn. Alonso/Renault made it exciting again in ’05 and it has been good ever since.

    The old argument over whether it should be sport or entertainment. Entertainment creates close finishes often, in sport it happens more naturally and is more rewarding for it. IMO of course..

  11. Hey I’m not as much in favor of “spec” as you may think. (although it was nice to see Newman Haas struggle at the beginning of the 07 season, and some parity amoungst the underfunded teams)

    In a perfect world there would be a happy medium. Everyone would have the opportunity to develop. (drivers, crew members, engineers, etc…) But there would also be some sort of cap on R&D spending, to allow everyone a more equal opportunity to be successful with healthy competition, and keep the sport from falling into the horrible domination of “superteams” which drives people away from the sport.

    Look how much more interesting it is when there are more people in the championship hunt! How much more interesting races are when there is a chance that the “little guy” team can podium!

    All series proudly tout the stats of “look how many different winners we had this season!”

    It drives fandom. It drives sponsorship.

    I think in a perfect world it’s an entertaining sport πŸ˜‰

  12. it’ll be interesting with the bizarro economic climate we are going to be in in 09, to see if the tightening of funding brings with it more parity across the board. (in all racing series)

  13. The problem is finding away to apply a cap. They’ll hire very creative accountants. Honda might spend xx million developing a part for a road car but oh no, it doesn’t really work on a road car, after all that work… but hey it’s perfect for a race car, we’ll just move it over there! And that Toyota wind tunnel is for wind resistance on the new Prius, we just sometimes use it for the F1 car too…

    There have always been superteams. I like that there are established successful teams with others muscling in from time to time, mixing up the old order. Ferrari and McLaren always up there with Renault or BMW taking a title now and then (not just the odd race win). It wouldn’t be as much fun if the top teams from one year were near the back the next. Unless they are AGR, heh.

  14. I’m not saying Macca or Ferrari should win every or almost every title.. just that they should be in the top 4 teams.. I liked 1997 when McLaren were doing what BMW were doing this season and Williams were doing all the winning, but I’m a Williams fan..

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