Happy New Year to you all. I’d like to take this opportunity to wish all my blog readers a prosperous 2013.
The third part of my review series see’s my team and moment of the year from last season. As with the previous posts, feel free to get in touch and let me know who your team of the year were and what your moment of the year was.
Team of the year: This, for me has to go to the Toyota LMP1 team. On the back foot from at the beginning of the year with little time to develop the car before the start of the World Endurance Championship, it looked like Audi were going to go unchallenged all year thanks to the withdrawal of rivals Peugeot. No one expected much from Toyota and with Sebring being used as a test and the team not entering the Spa race to concentrate on getting the car ready for Le Mans, Audi had nothing to worry about.
However, Toyota showed glimpses of things to come, and despite not finishing either car, one due to ‘That Crash’ the Toyota team did lead the race at one point. Since then, the team have become stronger and stronger. Podium finishes at Silverstone….. And Finally a race victory at Fuji underlinded their ability and now have Audi looking over their shoulder. The German marque’s years of Dominance in Endurance racing looks under threat from a Team who are now serious LeMans and WEC championship contenders.
See who the rest of the Checkered Flag Team picked as their Team of the Year Here.
Moment’ of the year: There have been a number of great moments this year and I am grateful to have experienced some personally. There are too many to mention and it is difficult to pick out one in particular, but personally, my first visit to the Nurburgring for the 24 hour race is a stand out moment and one that bought many memories I will never forget. But I also think the 40th running of the Nurburgring 24 hour race produced my moment of the year in terms of the overall result. Finally Audi had conquered the Green Hell and took their first victory in the notoriously gruelling race. This contributed to a remarkable chain of results this year for the German car giants as 2012 saw them also take wins in the Bathurst 12hr, the Spa 24hr, the Zolder 24hr And of course a 1,2,3 and 4 at Le Mans. It just underlines the true extent of German efficiency and reliability.
What were the moments of the year for the TCF team? Find out Here.
The Monaco Grand Prix has drawn to a close and to be honest I feel very disappointed. The win was handed, gift wrapped to Red Bull with a bow on top. Had the race been able to run the course, no doubt Jenson Button would have taken the win with both Alonso and Vettel running on very worn tyres against Button’s fresher ones.
However, the weekend threw up few talking points but this blog entry will discuss one major issue in formula one and motorsport in general. Most people will have seen Sergio Perez’s accident in qualifying three on Saturday which ultimately bought safety into the forefront of people’s minds. Thankfully safety within motorsport has improved immensely as the years have passed and rightly so. Cars get faster and faster so the risk to drivers would ordinarily get higher and higher. But thanks to the improvements in car and driver safety the risks have been reduced.
Gone are the days when Formula One and the death of drivers went hand in hand and dreadful images such as those of Zolder in 1973 as David Purley tried in vain to free Roger Williamson from his burning car whilst marshall’s stood idly by are a thing of the past. Safety within motorsport is evolving rapidly and coupled with the training given to marshall’s and their ability to deal with all situations are a testament to all involved.
Unfortunately, some improvements can only be made as accidents happen. It takes an accident to make people aware of a certain problem before that issue can be addressed, therefore there will always be freak accidents coupled with the fact divers push cars to the limit it is an inevitability accidents will happen. But thanks to current safety features those accidents rarely see serious injury. It never ceases to amaze me at how a driver can walk away from huge accidents such as the recent Indy 500 practice accident involving Simona de Silvestro and the huge Porsche crash at San Marino.
It is the incredible safety features in place that meant Perez only suffered minor injuries at Monaco and had that happened 20 years ago, the results could have been a lot worse. Although many improvements have come too late for all the great drivers who have given their lives doing something they love, but ultimately motorsport is dangerous and we all know that. But the great work behind the scenes developing improvements mean that the fatalities and serious injuries have become rare. It’s those who develop new safety features and the marshall’s trackside on hand to step in when needed that are the unsung heroes of motorsport and all drivers need to be thankful for it. Long may these improvements continue to help make this sport so great.Finally, due to the start of the motorsport season, my model making has been neglected. However, this week I managed to complete my model Toyota 88C. I’m not sure what will be my next build but I will be keeping an eye out for a new project.