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An Aside with Joe - The absolutely greatest thing since toasted, fried bread // Joe discusses the 2012 calendar and what it means for circuits

Published by Mr. C

Joe Saward returns from an extended summer break to bring us all the news from the Formula 1 world. With the 2012 calendar confirmed we discuss alternating motor races, a village with a happy atmosphere, taking F1 to Le Mans and China's giant paddock Pac-Man.

Further topics on the agenda include Lewis Hamilton behaving oddly, a lack of professional explainers, proving anything and everything with statistics and why Kubica suggested anyone but Heidfeld.

Additionally, Joe puts his cap on backwards in honour of Swizz Beatz and Puff Pastry, justifies the need for nearly-men, before re-living a hot lap around Chimay.

All this and much, much more in this post-Belgium episode of An Aside with Joe.

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  • I gather Britany is also a key point for enthusiastic surfers.

  • Ahhhh.... Paul Ricard... Nice little circuit... only one grandstand. Middle of absolutely nowhere, although Marseilles is about 40 miles away

  • i guess they have time to build more grandstands. it's a bit flat though, isn't it?

  • i guess they have time to build more grandstands. it's a bit flat though, isn't it?

    It is a bit flat, but not a bad layout. Not as nice since they split the back straight with chicanes.

  • Just a slight correction for Joe;

    I believe hillclimbing racing is now legal in Switzerland. It's only circuit racing now that's still banned.

    :)

  • Considering what I do for a living (and I believe you may know Mr C), even I have never heard of Swizz Beatz

    :)

  • Considering what I do for a living (and I believe you may know Mr C), even I have never heard of Swizz Beatz

    Isn't he the guy who's married to Alicia Keys?

  • apparently so, although i haven't heard from her in a decade.

    according to wikipedia "In 2010 on his Twitter Swizz Beatz renamed his album three times" - he'll fit right in with group lotus then.

  • Had no idea Boullier and Joe were into having long discussions - but I have noted that recent Eric Boullier and Alan Permaine accounts rarely align (Permaine has stated the Petrov's speed would closely match Kubica's and the exhaust -induced fire of the Heidfeld car probably happened prior to the pit stop and not caused by the driver). Lotus Renault put Senna into the seat to fast-track lucrative Brazilian oil money (OGX sponsorships appeared on the car at Spa) and this is what is putting the smile back on the team's face. The Senna name plus the backing of world's eighth wealthiest man is sure to please an investment company like GENII. When Robert returns will Russian or Brazilian money win the second seat? I am predicting that Petrov will be publicly rubbished and Senna continues. Brazilian oil money is so much sweeter than a Russian Shipbuilder (Vyborg Shipyard who's director is Petrov's dad) or for that matter Venezuelan oil money. Personally I think it is a bit rich to mostly blame Pastor for the Monaco accident with Hamilton, the Spa incident was a different matter.

  • When Robert returns will Russian or Brazilian money win the second seat

    you mean if robert returns...

    no guarantees even at this stage, surely?

  • you mean if robert returns...

    very true - I do not really like to admit the "if" - Nick as Joe correctly stated, was a substitute for at most the season but in end just a half season. All the while Nick was in the seat it suggested a quicker return of Robert. I just worry that the putting Senna in the seat reflects the lack of guarantees for a return of Robert.

  • After listening to this blog I watched this video

    www.youtube.com/w…tch?v=Ngk9jmzFIY8

    the appeal of owning a Lotus has mysteriously left me!

  • After listening to this blog I watched this video

    oh my goodness.

    i'm guessing no-one in that room was going back to their desk thinking about the "new way". more likely going back for a quiet cry in a corner.

  • Want to know the real reason Nick was sacked? The Razor company Gillette is the second new sponsor to appear on the Lotus Renault GPs at Spa - he refused to shaved his beard off.

  • Nice to get a surprise Aside.

    I don't think I have even heard of Chimay before so I look forward to reading that post.

    On a point I read as I scanned through the comments. I don't think Joe is blaming Maldonado for the Monaco incident simply saying that if he was a bit more aware of his surroundings he would have realised that it was smarter for him to let Hamilton through. Of course had Maldonado not been weaving all over the place on the run to that corner Hamilton would have passed him easily before the corner

  • On a point I read as I scanned through the comments. I don't think Joe is blaming Maldonado for the Monaco incident simply saying that if he was a bit more aware of his surroundings he would have realised that it was smarter for him to let Hamilton through.

    There is an element of truth, but then you hear Martin Whitmarsh saying that it was entirely Kobi's fault for the accident at Spa since the car following can should have the ability to avoid. This is a case of special pleading as you follow the logic back to Monaco. For me Lewis was more to blame for the Monaco event but Maldonaldo did do a change of direction in defense. It is of course not unknown for Lewis to weave in the past.

    I was surprised that Lewis admitted to being at 100% fault with the Kobi accident! I think I agree with Joe on this but the Maldonaldo - Lewis accidentis a bit different, I think there was a bit of an ego flexing by both drivers - just Maldonaldo got it horribly wrong and ultimately caused the accident- so he should have got more punishment with Lewis not being totally innocent.

    I often tend to fall into the Christine camp where I really struggle to actually say it is one or another driver's fault unless it is very clear (e.g Buemi - Heidfeld where Buemi took the inside line to prevent being overtaken on the inside and then moved right across the track and left no room on the outside for an overtake).

    With respect to Senna (I am not a fan of his) but Glock did a virtually identical accident so lets give him a few races before any judgement. Equally do not build up a good qualifying into anything more than a good opportunity for a good start to the race - it does not bring points. I have noted that most of the more experienced drivers are somewhat slower in qualifying but I think their car is better prepared for the duration of the race. This is why Mark, Michael, Jenson, Rubens etc all have race pace that seemed better than their apparent qualifying pace. Jenson and Mark's race pace at Spa was really good.

  • Monaco on the same day as the Indy 500 again. The reason Le Mans doesn't clash in 2012 is because it is now a part of an official FIA World Championship. I'm not sure the ACO would care either way.

  • The reason Le Mans doesn't clash in 2012 is because it is now a part of an official FIA World Championship. I'm not sure the ACO would care either way.

    so the fia looked at the f1 calendar and moved le mans. or something else?

  • Loved the Puff Pastry bit :)

  • so the fia looked at the f1 calendar and moved le mans. or something else?

    FIA/ACO joint decision because they are keen to be all touchy feely after last time.. and this is still the ACO's race. Certainly I think this'll be something coming from the FIA side and the ACO agreed for whatever reasons.

  • got ya, cheers.

  • Disagree about the sense of awe at Spa compared to Monza, having been to both (albeit Monza was empty at the time so no GP atmosphere), they are both pretty special.

  • Great show, he's got a good knack for explaining complex things in a straightforward manner which is why these work so well.

  • After listening to this blog I watched this video

    www.youtube.com/w…tch?v=Ngk9jmzFIY8

    the appeal of owning a Lotus has mysteriously left me!

    Wow.

    Colin who?

  • Colin who?

    (and not in a good way)

  • Colin who?

    ha!

  • I certainly hope that Joe's questioning of the date conflict of Monaco, the Indy 500,and the Coca-Cola 600 was rhetorical. The two US races are held on Memorial Day weekend... Much as Monaco is held the weekend of Assention. Moving either would need bending history.

    In a similar thread, the timing of the Austin race is quite interesting, being the weekend before U.S. Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is the busiest travel weekend I the U.S. The holiday is considered more important than Christmas. Traditionally, people take the Friday off as well, as the official holiday is the Thursday. I wonder how many people will have the work flexibility to take those two weekends off. More imposing is the financial burden of having to travel to two destinations two weekends in a row.

    Does anyone know who was he old man that Jean Alessi was driving around?

  • Much as Monaco is held the weekend of Assention. Moving either would need bending history.

    what is the weekend of assention, and why is it significant?

  • what is the weekend of assention, and why is it significant?

    Some bloke died and got beamed up to heaven. It's quite a famous event. A lot of people take the whole thing way too seriously

  • I believe that it is a Christian holiday, tied in to Easter. I remember hearing that the practices are on Thursdays to allow for Friday services...

  • Some bloke died and got beamed up to heaven. It's quite a famous event. A lot of people take the whole thing way too seriously

    Some bloke died and got beamed up to heaven. It's quite a famous event. A lot of people take the whole thing way too seriously

    Yeah, that... Slow typing on a Tab 10.1.... But SPC-RT seems to work fine.

  • Some bloke died and got beamed up to heaven. It's quite a famous event. A lot of people take the whole thing way too seriously

    oh that thing.

    f1 cars race on sundays. presumably as no-one cares that it's meant to be a day of rest, no-one should be bothered if the race in monaco was scheduled a week later.

    the thursday practice thing exists these days to extend punters hotel stays and to increase tourism income, they can do that any weekend.

  • f1 cars race on sundays. presumably as no-one cares that it's meant to be a day of rest, no-one should be bothered if the race in monaco was scheduled a week later.

    There is nothing as inflexible as tradition. I can't imagine the ACM ever agreeing to the race moving from Ascension

  • I believe that it is a Christian holiday, tied in to Easter. I remember hearing that the practices are on Thursdays to allow for Friday services...

    Yep, it's a fairly major deal in Christian circles.

    There is nothing as inflexible as tradition. I can't imagine the ACM ever agreeing to the race moving from Ascension

    Not a chance at the minute. By the same measure, the Indy 500 will never move from Memorial Weekend.

  • I'm so glad to hear that Joe doesn't think Webber's horrible starts are driver error. It doesn't help him to get off the grid better if it's not his fault, but I have been wondering what the hell the problem is.

    Let the conspiracy theories continue.

  • I'm so glad to hear that Joe doesn't think Webber's horrible starts are driver error.

    If Mark really thought he was being deliberately disadvantaged don't you think he'd be shouting about it and lookig to drive elsewhere?

    I like Mark as a spokesman, but I would agree with Joe that he just isn't quite WDC standard (sorry)

  • Also, listening to the chat about GP+ might it be an idea to charge a monthy fee instead of a season fee. £25 isn't much for a full season of magazines but some people might prefer to pay a fiver a month or whatever instead of a paying for the season

  • If Mark really thought he was being deliberately disadvantaged don't you think he'd be shouting about it and lookig to drive elsewhere?

    Sure. What I meant was that there may or not be anything purposefully done to his launch control, but the talk will continue. I can't imagine those top level mechanics and engineers would want to keep failing off the line every race.

    I like Mark as a spokesman, but I would agree with Joe that he just isn't quite WDC standard (sorry)

    Yeah, and that's fine with me, I like him regardless. I want him to do well, but I'm not delusional. :)

  • I like Mark as a spokesman, but I would agree with Joe that he just isn't quite WDC standard (sorry)

    Yeah, and that's fine with me, I like him regardless. I want him to do well, but I'm not delusional. :)

    FWIW, Jenson Button wasn't thought of to be WDC-standard... until he won the WDC. Given that he has won races, it's a matter of winning at the right times (and getting lucky at the right times too) to be WDC.

  • FWIW, Jenson Button wasn't thought of to be WDC-standard... until he won the WDC. Given that he has won races, it's a matter of winning at the right times (and getting lucky at the right times too) to be WDC.

    Ah, Journeyer *sigh* always the optimist. I love that about you! :) Sounds good.

    I support Mark as a driver no matter where he's driving or how he's doing.

  • I support Mark as a driver no matter where he's driving or how he's doing.

    Adrimable and the mark of a true fan! I supported DC until he retired, at times it wasn't fun especially during his last season but we can't help who we support.

    FWIW, Jenson Button wasn't thought of to be WDC-standard... until he won the WDC. Given that he has won races, it's a matter of winning at the right times (and getting lucky at the right times too) to be WDC.

    Is the car more important than the driver? Senna certainly srprised me with his qualifying pace and who'd have thought it from his HRT days

  • Is the car more important than the driver? Senna certainly srprised me with his qualifying pace and who'd have thought it from his HRT days

    I dunno. Senna's pace in qualifying didn't surprise me in the slightest - I've always known he's not Ayrton, but have also believed he was better than most out there.

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