Over the white line: Lewis’ biggest challenge yet

By LJ Hutchins

CalendarFriday, November 14th, 2008

 
 

Now the F1 season’s come to a close we’ve decided to experiment with a new weekly feature that rounds up a lot of the lesser-spotted stories from the week’s news and sport coverage.

This is the sort of thing we’d ideally be doing all year round, but it includes the stuff that often gets dropped due to time pressures when the racing season is in full flight.

So we’ll give it a spin during the quiet times and see how it goes down. As ever, let us have your comments and feedback – and tips for any stories you think we ought to be covering

– – – – –

  • Lewis Hamilton will soon be facing a fight far tougher than anything he’s faced during the 2007 or 2008 F1 season – prising the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award out from beneath Olympic swimmer Rebecca Adlington’s spike heel. She’s got no intention of making it easy for him, as she’s pointed out recently. And she’s bringing her mates, including the entire GB cycling squad and Olympic sailor Ben Ainslie. Careful Lewis – we fear the Boy Wonder could lose some fingers. More here.
  • Life’s a bitch, isn’t it? Just as the Toyota F1 team were starting to get things together and perform in the way that they should have been doing three or more years ago, news comes from the Autopia department of Wired magazine about the financial trouble the company is currently facing – the same financial trouble that Honda has neatly managed to avoid. Does this mean bye-bye F1 for the Japanese giant? More here.
  • We bring you all the F1 news that counts here – including a new answer to the question of who’s the top British F1 team, McLaren or Williams. You might think the matter was decided by the fact one came second in the latest constructors’ championship, and the other eighth. But things are not that straightforward, oh no. The teams are actually a lot better-matched than they seem, as was proved in a recent mechanics’ football tournament, covered by ITV refugee James Allen in his blog here.
  • Guess what Pedro de la Rosa’s been doing in his spare time? All right, it’s only a rumour that he’s the F1 driver who helped develop a new supercar, but it’s a well-informed one from The Times’ motoring writer Nick Hall. From the Cool as F-F-F Department comes the Tramontana – a Spanish charger that looks a bit like an F1 race car and is said to drive like one too. The Tramontana (goes like the wind, geddit?) is an odd-looking beast and probably far too memorable to traffic police should you happen to find yourself charging down the autopista at the top end of 200mph. Best saved for track days… More here.
  • Also from The Times comes the sound of Martin Brundle lamenting “I coulda been a contender” – if only he’d been more like David Coulthard while he was driving. Musing how he beat Senna, Schumacher and Hakkinen on his best days he concludes that, if only he’d approached his driving career the way DC did, he might have beaten them rather more often. More here.
  • And finally… we’ve said it before, a few dozen times, and we’re sure we’ll say it again, a few dozen times. But for all those other people who find it incomprehensible that Bernie Ecclestone should want to uproot the British Grand Prix from a venue with vast experience of running it, which sold out last year and which already has planning permission for improvements, and move it to an untried venue that needs to raise the capital and get permission to make running the race viable, and all this in a possibly unfeasibly tight time frame, and which is now possibly facing new delays, well, here’s more grist to your mill.

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