Friday, 8 July 2016

New Grand Prix Times article: What did Austria’s kerb-hopping tell us about modern F1 drivers?

The single weekend's gathering of F1 folks in Austria's Spielberg region just passed packed in an astonishing number of distinct pieces of drama, perhaps as many as we'd expect across a whole swathe of a season. One of them looked for a time like it would dominate though, at least until Seb Vettel's tyre went pop and certainly until, you know, that on the final lap.

Photo: Octane Photography
That is, yellow 'baguette' kerbs on the outside of many turns and good for breaking F1 cars if you ran one over them. Drivers it seemed were maddeningly reluctant to twig this seemingly basic premise though, and as a result no fewer than four suspension breakages across Friday and Saturday were witnessed.

Many observers were exasperated at this, concluding 'why don't they just stay off the kerbs?' Simples. Some went further and thought it all said something unflattering about the decadent modern F1 pilot. Not like in the good old days.

In my latest Grand Prix Times article though I argue that the opposite is true. That the kerb-hopping showed F1 drivers' fundamental nature, and one that likely has been the way for decades. One that is gladiatorial. You can have a read here: http://www.grandprixtimes.com/news/id/12386

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