Home Of Circuit Gilles Villeneuve!
You Let Alesi Have a Win!
And Made the 2014 Season Fun Again!
Yesterday really did have all of the ingredients that can transform a F1 race into something special. We had Mercedes AMG teammates duking it out for the lead and then simultaneously suffering a bizarre overheating issue, leading to brake failure for Lewis and leaving Nico to soldier on while giving up chunks of a 20+ second lead to a 7 car pack in desperate pursuit.
Then there was Force India attempting to pull off a miracle one stop strategy for both drivers from the middle of the grid and just missing out.
And suddenly, it was enjoyable to watch Red Bull exhibit their championship pedigree and execute flawlessly to offset their shortcomings down the straight and get the jump on their Mercedes rivals. I’m one who is seldom moved by the technical brilliance that goes into a F1 car, but when the team was asking Ricciardo where he needs his extra energy boost to fight Perez, I was clapping like a trained seal.
It was a display of unpredictable, dramatic racing that has seldom been seen this year and appropriately ended with a bang! Literally. Massa and Perez had a 170mph “misunderstanding” on the last lap and suddenly the race was over. As the dust settled, the amazing Daniel Ricciardo was a first time winner and AMG Mercedes’ quest for 19 race perfection was over. The race was so chaotic that Nico Rosberg thought he finished 5th!
The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve really is the perfect place to hold a race. It has long straights into heavy braking zones, variable weather conditions, ominous concrete walls at the exit of every chicane waiting to punish a driver for the slightest mistake, a brilliantly devised pit exit that creates a drag race to the exit of turn 2, and massive grandstands on top of the corners that transforms a hairpin into a electric stadium environment for the passionate fans. It was great to see the old park roads on the Île Notre-Dame produce another thriller. Somewhere the great Gilles approved. Let’s just hope all of the marmots made it through the weekend unscathed.
Witnessing a race of that caliber restores my faith in F1 and provides affirmation that YES, it is totally rational to spend 90 minutes on Saturday and 2.5 hours on Sunday in front of the tube ignoring family, responsibilities and perfect weather. Here’s hoping that the Austrian Red Bull Ring will provide some more fireworks in two weeks time.
Score: Wins: Lewis 4 – Nico 2. DNF’s: Nico 0 – Lewis 2. Suddenly that double points season finale at Abu Dhabi is looking more exciting by the minute!
Side thought- I can only imagine how nutty the peripheral Red Bull activities will be at their showcase track. Will they bring out their entire stable of death defying stunt wackos to entertain the drunk buzzards? That could be the best show on earth! A Red Bull Buzzard Fest is the new Burning Man.