Location: Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India

The permanent temptation of life is to confuse dreams with reality. The permanent defeat of life is when dreams are surrendered to reality.

Friday, December 29, 2006

Formula 1

The one thing I am looking forward to is the beginning of the 2007 Formula 1 season. The 2006 season was enthralling and will I am sure be remembered as the year Micheal Schumacher showed us what he is capable of, I mean in a good way. Personally, I feel that the last race of 2006 at Brazil was one of Micheal's best drives...even better than some of his drives to the top step of the podiums. Ferrari started only towards the middle of the season and after that it was just playing catch up to Renault. But to their credit Micheal and Ferrari gave us a thrilling season that was just marred by the engine failure that Micheal picked up...else Ferrari would have been a worthy champion at the end and Micheal could have signed off in style as an eight time world drivers champion. Well it doesn’t matter, cause Micheal will always remain an icon and the sport will have to wait a long time for another personality.

Some people say that Micheal cheated and his hunger to win meant stretching the boundary lines between fair play and cheating...but, it is this flawed Micheal that gave us a personality to root for...or against. I dont want to see F1 with dour and sour faced Alonso's definitely. I mean this Alonso guy is always bitching and moaning when he doesn’t complete a race or somebody else finishes ahead of him, blaming everyone from his fellow racing drivers, to his team mate to his team. When have you seen Micheal or for that matter Kimi Raikkonnen (another driver I admire hugely) do that. I mean if anybody had to whine and complain, it had to be Raikkonnen. For the past few years McLaren has been giving him crappy cars that either dont have the pace or if they have the pace, they dont have the distance on them. After the engine expired or there was a mechanical fault, what did Raikkonnen do...he just went and downed a few vodka's.

No doubt that Alonso is a good racer, but he cannot be great yet...let us see how he does in the McLaren now and if the 2007 McLaren is as temperamental as it was over the past few years, Alonso would have to work really hard to even get to the chequered flag. Great drivers are those help in developing the car and create a driving machine that is consistent over a long period of time. That is what Micheal did with Ferrari, when he moved form Benetton to Ferrari, the latter were at an all time low and had not won a championship in over two decades. Micheal and the team worked on it for over four years till they became champions and that purple streak lasted for the next five years. Deservedly Micheal can be hailed a champion or a great F1 driver. These days the word 'great' is being bandied about too much, it doesn’t hold any meaning anymore.

I always though Kimi to be a better driver than Alonso, purely on the speed Kimi achieves and the relentless manner in which he attacks each lap. Formula 1 is at the apex of technological innovations and is at the forefront of motor racing. Here the man and the machine is supposed to be pushing at the boundaries of capabilities. This may bring with it the uncertainties associated with racing that includes expiring engines and aerodynamical failures...but that is the price one pays for pushing technology to the limits and beyond. That is the most exciting part of a Formula 1 when too much emphasis is placed on winning races and championships, there is a natural tendency to be conservative. Kimi I believe is a true racer in which he pushes himself and the machine to the ultimate point...and there lies the true essence of motor racing. 2007 season will be a strange with no Schumacher around anymore, but I hope Kimi in his red Ferrari destroys Alonso in his McLaren and restore Ferrari to where they belong and puts Alonso where he belongs.

Let the racing begin.


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