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The Temporal and the Cult of F1


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#1 Don Capps

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 15:01

After once again reading through this thread, http://forums.atlasf...&threadid=67703 , I think that the use of the term "rose-tinted glasses" is perhaps misplaced as regards to the group it usually gets tossed at in these discussions.

Biting -- or at least nipping -- the hand that allows me to have a platform from which to speak, I think that the World Wide Web and the establishment of the various fora devoted to F1, along with the increased coverage of F1 on television, has enabled the Cult of F1 to significantly alter the nature of such discussions.

I think the basis of this discussion goes to the nub of the issue that plagues the interaction of F1 Cultists and, well, those to whom F1 is merely a part of a larger fabric.

I am of the opinion that F1 -- as in F1 As It Is Practeice Today -- is certainly an endorsement for the notion of evolution; as well as being cause to question that the passage of time is not necessarily progress in some cases.

The Certainty of Their Convictions by F1 Cultists often reminds of that same sense of Certainty I experienced lo these many decades ago when I was nudging the end of my second decade and not my sixieth decade.

I actually keep very current with the comings-and-goings and the wiles of F1 in its 2004 version. Indeed, I am often surprised just how much of an interest I do take in F1 2004. However, how much is actually Interest and how much is actually Habit is as much a question for me as it is for others to decide.

Last night I happened upon my issues of Motor Sport from the year 1994. This was not long after DSJ had departed, the magazine was floundering from not only that but finding that its niche being increasingly vague and ill-defined, a problem made worse by the weeklies basically eating its lunch. What was interesting to me was to look at how Tremayne and the others at Motor Sport viewed the racing world, F1 in particular. However, I had forgotten just how much rallying and sports car racing -- the latter courtesy Michael Cotton -- that Motor Sport contained.

I had watched the NASCAR Nextel Cup race at Fort Worth yesterday while perusing some old issues of Sports Cars Illustrated and Sports Car Graphic. With the sending forth of many of the volumes of my professional research library to Cullowhee, North Carolina, I am now in the process of reorganizing my motor sport research materials and SI and SCG now happen to share a shelf versus adjacent boxes on the floor.

What I drew from the issues of SCI (plus early C/D after the name change) and SCG was that it did seem somehow more fun or enjoyable, it all being at a different scale and tone than today.

I will mull this over some more. I feel a good RVM coming out of this.....

/////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

Temporal: Lasting only for a time; not eternal
(from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition, 2000)

The things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
(St. Paul, 2nd Letter to the Corinthians, 4:18)

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#2 ensign14

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 16:08

It's the same thing when an indie band gets signed to a major label. They have to go commercial or else they are dropped. E.g. compare One Hand Clapping-era James to the stadium rock of Gold Mother et al.

F1 in the past, when more of a niche, could get on with itself without any problem; as soon as sponsors demanded bang for buck, the 'show' got turned up several notches. Doesn't make it any worse as such, just different, although anything that is contrived for close racing has to be taken with a few pinches of salt.

#3 Don Capps

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 17:39

Originally posted by ensign14
It's the same thing when an indie band gets signed to a major label. They have to go commercial or else they are dropped. E.g. compare One Hand Clapping-era James to the stadium rock of Gold Mother et al.


I have not a clue as to who or what you are referring to.... :confused:

Originally posted by ensign14
F1 in the past, when more of a niche, could get on with itself without any problem; as soon as sponsors demanded bang for buck, the 'show' got turned up several notches. Doesn't make it any worse as such, just different, although anything that is contrived for close racing has to be taken with a few pinches of salt.


There still really isn't all that much show in F1 to my way of thinking. As for it being Different and not necessarily worse, in the painting with broad brushstrokes sense this is perhaps the case. However, I think that F1 is seriously adrift and the F1 Cultists are happy to whine about the price of tattoos rather than any notion of the deep-seated reasons that F1 is going to blow up in their faces at some point in the future.

Racing formulae by their very nature are contrived to promote close racing -- is just that some work better than others. Part of the reason that F1 is currently providing what I consider some really rancid parades, ah, er, racing is that they lost the bubble some years ago and haven't a clue as to how to regain it. It is really pathetic that an enterprise wasting billions of dollars and euros a year can seem so lame. In the 1981 Autocourse, DSJ stated that the "icing remains the same." Perhaps that is the problem -- the cake under the icing is pretty substandard, almost more akin to cardboard.

I really have to say that modern F1 is an acquired taste and I increasing find it less and less satisfying.

Speaking of the effect of F1 Cult, I know this will get me in touble and that the article is obviously well-intentioned, and does serve to move attention to eras beyond the current one, but.... http://www.atlasf1.c...eview/quiz.html simply caters to the F1 Cultists' view of life wherein prior to 1950 there was this vast, hazy, empty void which is completely irrelevant to F1 Today.

I am always willing to learn things and happy in my new-found knowledge concerning the first Franch GP of 1950; the first Australian GP of 1985; the first British GP of 1950; the first German GP of 1951; the first Dutch GP -- the answer being sought is 1952 of course; the first Swiss GP of 1950; the first Belgian GP of 1950; the first South African GP of 1962; the first Austrian GP -- of the choices it is of course 1964..... I think that Marcel clearly knows that that there were events prior to those mentioned, but the members of the F1 Cult would simply be at a loss to fathom such information and there would be a deluge of complaints about the inaccuracy of his information since Everyone Clearly Knows that Anything Prior to 1950 Is Irrelevant and Unimportant.

But, I digress....

#4 oldtimer

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 20:32

Originally posted by Don Capps


There still really isn't all that much show in F1 to my way of thinking. As for it being Different and not necessarily worse, in the painting with broad brushstrokes sense this is perhaps the case. However, I think that F1 is seriously adrift and the F1 Cultists are happy to whine about the price of tattoos rather than any notion of the deep-seated reasons that F1 is going to blow up in their faces at some point in the future.

Racing formulae by their very nature are contrived to promote close racing -- is just that some work better than others. Part of the reason that F1 is currently providing what I consider some really rancid parades, ah, er, racing is that they lost the bubble some years ago and haven't a clue as to how to regain it. It is really pathetic that an enterprise wasting billions of dollars and euros a year can seem so lame. In the 1981 Autocourse, DSJ stated that the "icing remains the same." Perhaps that is the problem -- the cake under the icing is pretty substandard, almost more akin to cardboard.

I really have to say that modern F1 is an acquired taste and I increasing find it less and less satisfying.

Speaking of the effect of F1 Cult, I know this will get me in touble and that the article is obviously well-intentioned, and does serve to move attention to eras beyond the current one, but.... http://www.atlasf1.c...eview/quiz.html simply caters to the F1 Cultists' view of life wherein prior to 1950 there was this vast, hazy, empty void which is completely irrelevant to F1 Today.

I am always willing to learn things and happy in my new-found knowledge concerning the first Franch GP of 1950; the first Australian GP of 1985; the first British GP of 1950; the first German GP of 1951; the first Dutch GP -- the answer being sought is 1952 of course; the first Swiss GP of 1950; the first Belgian GP of 1950; the first South African GP of 1962; the first Austrian GP -- of the choices it is of course 1964..... I think that Marcel clearly knows that that there were events prior to those mentioned, but the members of the F1 Cult would simply be at a loss to fathom such information and there would be a deluge of complaints about the inaccuracy of his information since Everyone Clearly Knows that Anything Prior to 1950 Is Irrelevant and Unimportant.

But, I digress....


F1 is 'going to blow up in their faces' when the financial bubble which feeds the showmanship, and is driven by good old-fashioned greed, bursts.

It seems to me that it is the icing that is spoiling the cake. In the cake are several teams who are struggling mightily to overcome a strong team with a dominant driver. The Showmen and the Cultists bemoan the lack of success of the other teams, whilst not bothering to look too closely at what is going on. And there are Showmen in some teams who get in the way of their efforts.

The Bahrein GP, on a new circuit that was reported as requiring precision driving, is an interesting example of what is in the cake.

I was struck by the fastest lap times of a certain Michael Schumacher on Saturday and race day.

Saturday, first practice session: 1 minute 30.545 secs

Saturday, second practice session: 1 minute 30.407 secs

Saturday, 1st qualifying session: 1 minute 30.751 secs

Saturday, 2nd qualifying session: 1 minute 30.139 secs

Sunday, the race: 1 minute 30.252 secs.

It occurs to me that this is the sort of performance that, in the days of print, DSJ and others extolled when they were writing about Alberto Ascari and Jim Clark. And those words are not a small part of the enormous respect and legendary powers of those two drivers.

But the testimony to remarkable driving of a very good car got lost in the www, and other, debates/rantings about track temperatures, tyre manufacturers, sand and dust, the role of no.1 drivers, who had the most powerful engine, and so on and so. It may have been boring to watch, but only in the same way as seeing Clark destroy a field by the end of the first lap.

As to Everyone Clearly Knows that Anything Prior to 1950 is Irrevelant and Unimportant, that also sounds like the White House and a whole bunch of other institutions and enterprises.

#5 Doug Nye

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 20:33

Originally posted by ensign14
...F1 in the past, when more of a niche, could get on with itself without any problem; as soon as sponsors demanded bang for buck, the 'show' got turned up several notches.


Really? After watching the Camel-Dung Grand Prix yesterday I must confess I was really quite depressed to see how a pretty strong cross-section of computer-age younger enthusiasts announced how exciting the circuit seemed to them, and what a wonderful flow it offered. I must say the sporting nature of that place has totally escaped me....

The trouble is, perhaps, that there's been so little aesthetic majesty presented by the majority of Formula 1 venues for the past 5-6 years - the probable period in which such youthful enthusiasts have formed their opinions and the standards by which they judge today.

Most old duffers - I would venture - would agree that this youthful generation's standards must be pathetically low... I really feel sorry for them, in that the modern F1 world has provided them with such gut-wrenchingly low standards, for long enough to give the impression that desolation can somehow be impressive...

Truth is, of course, that Grand Prix racing per se has always been - for the most part - desperately dull to all but the most committed fan. One great feature has always been anticipation of the unexpected - sudden excitement, sudden drama - but could we ever guarantee it? Never.

There used to be three saving graces.

One, the cars themselves were very often woefully unreliable, which always had one on the edge of one's seat, willing one's favourite to survive.

Two, hugely varying settings provided by the circuits used - and circuit surroundings which provided a scenic, often daunting, stage upon which our heroes and the cars we admired could do their stuff.

Three, regardless of whether the racing was close (in truth it usually was not), at least the cars constantly provided such visible dynamic movement as our heroes thrashed them to within nano-seconds of their limits, that the car motion itself provided teetering, teeth-clenching drama as they were visibly close to falling off the edge...

Today - all three factors have, in effect, left the scene.

I have rubbed shoulders with great racing engineers all my working life - but now they've finally stuffed up 'my' game.

When such capable cars no longer look inherently poised to bite their drivers, and when drivers are so beset by threats of penalty they no longer indulge in really biting each other, and when circuits as visually bleeeaagggghhhh! as Bahrain-on-Sea so starve the eye of interest and sensation on the telly - then all that's left is an empty realisation of an awful truth.

For decades Formula 1 racing has intrinsically been a heap of crap.

But excitingly dynamic looking cars and circuits upon which they could visually excel created a majestic and noble show.

Remove the spectre of widespread unreliability, remove such vehicle dynamism, ignore the essential aesthetic requirements of such circuits, and all that is left...is the aforementioned heap of umbala.

Am I right - or is this merely the rambling of another starry-eyed kid, who has suddenly been startled into growing up (or growing old?).

:( DCN

#6 petefenelon

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 20:49

Originally posted by Doug Nye


Two, hugely varying settings provided by the circuits used - and circuit surroundings which provided a scenic, often daunting, stage upon which our heroes and the cars we admired could do their stuff.

Three, regardless of whether the racing was close (in truth it usually was not), at least the cars constantly provided such visible dynamic movement as our heroes thrashed them to within nano-seconds of their limits, that the car motion itself provided teetering, teeth-clenching drama as they were visibly close to falling off the edge...
:( DCN


I'm with you 100% on these two points.

Modern circuits are all too similar and sterile - I found myself saying that Bahrain "wasn't bad for a Tilkedrome"... but when everything's the same length, no decent inclines, with near-identical stands and fixtures and fittings.... it's F1 being delivered as 18 levels of the same computer game really isn't it?

A few diamonds still sparkle from the turds - as long as we've still got even the "new" Spa, even the chicane-blighted Monza, the shortened Interlagos, Suzuka, Monaco, there's still some vague hope. Not much, but some.

And I wouldn't nod off during Schumacher parades if he was still winning all the time, but had to hang that car out on its ear like Ronnie Peterson to do it. An F1 car that makes Baumgartner look smooth, and lets him get within a few percent of a proper driver's time, is too damn easy to drive.

#7 ehagar

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 20:55

Originally posted by Doug Nye


Really? After watching the Camel-Dung Grand Prix yesterday I must confess I was really quite depressed to see how a pretty strong cross-section of computer-age younger enthusiasts announced how exciting the circuit seemed to them, and what a wonderful flow it offered. I must say the sporting nature of that place has totally escaped me....


Now, now Doug. Not all 'computer-age enthusiasts' found the circuit exciting.

There is something about Sepang & Bahrain (and from the looks of it China too) that bother me. The tracks come across as national vanity projects rather than a proper racing circuit. I get this feeling that F1 is abandoning its roots for an Olympic style promotion. Is this kind of government/corporate welfare the future of F1? Bah.

Yes there was some decent racing behind the Ferraris. Yes the track was wide and permitted passing. But isn't that more a reflection that the current spec of Formula One car has outgrown it traditional roots?

Isn't it just cheaper to change the technical specifications for the cars rather than build new sandboxes?!?

While I can admit to being a bit entertained by the midfield action, these tracks lack... soul.
The action didn't give me a sense of wonderment either.

Quite frankly I was more impressed watching British F3 reruns this winter than F1. It looked positively dangerous watching races at Brands, Oulton, Castle Combe, Thruxton, etc. But watching a F3 car on a International F1 circuit? Yawn...

#8 petefenelon

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 21:03


There is something about Sepang & Bahrain (and from the looks of it China too) that bother me. The tracks come across as national vanity projects rather than a proper racing circuit. I get this feeling that F1 is abandoning its roots for an Olympic style promotion. Is this kind of government/corporate welfare the future of F1? Bah.


and the proposed Russian and Turkish circuits, and the new ersatz Hockenheimring.

And the problem? Tilke. Has he got the pics of Bernie with his nuts in Max's mouth or vice-versa? How come he gets all the contracts?

He's designed one sub-mediocre circuit and replicated it all over the world. "And they're all brilliant because they've got a long straight followed by a slow corner", say the kids - neglecting the fact that out the back they're like the travesty in the car park at Caesar's palace.

#9 David Holland

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 21:23

Doug, you're so right about the circuits. Somebody at the top in F1 is so anal that they appear to want all the circuits to look the same, have similar lap times, pit aprons, press rooms etc..

Looking back I feel the new Hockenheim was the final straw. Here was a circuit, universally unpopular in its early years that matured into an unusual track for modern racing. A twisty stadium section, two long blasts through the woods, punctuated by those chicanes. Not a classic - but different. The engineers had to balance a car between long strenous engines bursts and a tricky high down-force section that was full of compromise. In fact many old circuits were so different that each presented a unique challenge to drivers and engineers alike. This tended to shuffle the pack a little bit more, now we're left with tracks that are so similar it's like watching a computer game over somebodies shoulder. Why is Tilke so celebrated? Who cares about superb facilities when it comes out of the TV screen so sterile. And where were the spectators in Bahrain?

This is not what F1 is about.

Old racing tracks were like mountains, they were raced because they were there. Whether it was through seaside towns, old airfields, country roads, sand dunes or royal parks. Now they're built to order and it's sad to think I'm sorry to see Hockenheim ruined. If mountaineering was a TV sport they would have tried to build a mountain to make it easier to cover for TV - that's what has happened to our sport.

I want something unusual to happen - am I asking too much?

#10 Arturo Pereira

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 21:29

Originally posted by Doug Nye
.........................
There used to be three saving graces.

One, the cars themselves were very often woefully unreliable, which always had one on the edge of one's seat, willing one's favourite to survive.

Two, hugely varying settings provided by the circuits used - and circuit surroundings which provided a scenic, often daunting, stage upon which our heroes and the cars we admired could do their stuff.

Three, regardless of whether the racing was close (in truth it usually was not), at least the cars constantly provided such visible dynamic movement as our heroes thrashed them to within nano-seconds of their limits, that the car motion itself provided teetering, teeth-clenching drama as they were visibly close to falling off the edge...

Today - all three factors have, in effect, left the scene.

....................

Am I right - or is this merely the rambling of another starry-eyed kid, who has suddenly been startled into growing up (or growing old?).

:( DCN


IMHO, you are quite right.

#11 Option1

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 21:30

Don, I've read your post four times now and I'm a little at a loss to understand the point you're trying to make. Is it the usual one that some today believe that F1:

1) Is the absolute and sole pinnacle of all motorsport?

2) There was no motorsport before 1950 and the creation of F1?

3) There was no motorsport before one of the nouveau fans started watching it in 2001 and that there is only one form of motorsport and its name be F1?

4) Any or all of the above?

Neil

#12 Buford

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 21:38

This is just preaching to the choir on this forum. You guys should join me over at Racing Comments where I regularly have the young cultists screaming and pulling out their hair. Which is fun for me because I am jealous that they have hair to pull out. They totally hate me and are pissed off at these old guys (primarily Don and Me) who they think are trying to rain on their parade and are seeing the past through rose colored glasses. We should go rain on their parade in mass. Why? Because it is so doable.

#13 hinnershitz

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 21:43

Originally posted by ensign14
It's the same thing when an indie band gets signed to a major label. They have to go commercial or else they are dropped. E.g. compare One Hand Clapping-era James to the stadium rock of Gold Mother et al.


I'm actually reading "The Sociology Of Rock" by Simon Frith, published in 1978, and it indicates that the structures of the music business haven't really changed since the invention of the grammophone. There are just some new toys to play with: digital media, the internet, big companies having complete control on the mass media. This should translate to other areas, like motor racing. I'm just wondering why there's no TNF for other topics, like "indie bands", so I wouldn't have to post this here.

To me, the most disturbing thing about todays F1 is, that there are just 20 cars around, and if half of them were missing, I would barely notice.

And must we have a race in Bahrain, before any Finnish F1-driver has had the opportunity to race in front of his home crowd?

#14 condor

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 21:44

Buford :lol: who is looking through rose spectacles now :lol:


The old years were good :)....and so are the new :)

just in different ways :)

#15 oldtimer

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 22:05

Originally posted by David Holland

I want something unusual to happen - am I asking too much?


'Fraid so, David.

Bernie wants circuits with facilities where his big-monied sponsors must be hosted in a manner they think is appropiate to their status. "What you see is what you get" is no longer acceptable, and that includes getting mud on your Guccis.

It has been decided that cars have to be clamped on the road with aerodynamic devices, and that means cambered roads and grass verges and a whole host of other everyday road conditions are out

Nevertheless, I believe the Camel-Dung GP saw Michael Schumacher destroy a F1 field in a manner befitting a Jim Clark or an Alberto Ascari. Whatever you may say about the circuit, it was obvious that most were having difficulty coming to terms with it, and none were in a whisper of keeping up with Mr.Schumacher (senior).

Petefelon: in the 1.5l fomula days, the only time Jim Clark hung out his tail was to put on a show for the photographers, wasn't it?

As for circuit challenge, it would have been interesting to take Fangio aside and ask him his opinion of Aintree and Silverstone...

#16 dbw

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Posted 05 April 2004 - 23:51

IMHO i think the issue of getting older has a great deal to with all this to do.

#17 Don Capps

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 00:49

Originally posted by dbw
IMHO i think the issue of getting older has a great deal to with all this to do.


Well, big -- supply your own expletive -- deal if it does! I am sicker than hell of a bunch of pimply-faced, cyber-punks blowing me off and telling that I don't have a right to be so critical of F1. Supply your own expletive -- 'em all as far as I am concerned. When they've hung around racing about five decades -- even one or two for that matter -- I might take their comments a bit more seriously. Until then, supply your own expletive -- 'em!

Originally posted by condor
The old years were good :)....and so are the new :)

just in different ways :)


I just absolutely don't buy this -- supply an expletive of your choice -- any more. I certainly don't think that F1 today is very good. Different, most definitely, but certainly not Good. I have tried to convince myself that I agree with your statement, Condor, but that is simply lying to myself. I just simply find so much of F1 a pile of -- supply another expletive of your choice -- that I cannot imagine finding myself a fan of it today had I not been following it for so long. After watching NASCAR, why would I ever bother with something as terrible as F1?

Originally posted by Option1
Don, I've read your post four times now and I'm a little at a loss to understand the point you're trying to make. Is it the usual one that some today believe that F1:

4) Any or all of the above?

Neil


Perhaps it is a reaction to a question I keep asking myself: Why do I even -- supply another expletive of your choice -- bother with this silly -- supply another expletive of your choice -- called "F1?" Either I just don't "get" it any more or it is as boring and unexciting as it looks. I think the mainly the latter along with the former.

#18 Buford

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 01:00

Don used to be a real gentleman on the forums and suffered tons of abuse without responding in kind. I on the other hand was constantly getting nasty notes from administrators for drilling new holes in the newbies and was told I was supposed to educate them, not mock them.

I think they have finally gotten to Don. He is not being a gentleman anymore. I find this refreshing because this is an extention of the racing world and I never found many gentleman around there and certainly wasn't one myself either. There were a few but rowdiness was the norm and I think racing discussions should be rowdy too.

#19 dbw

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 01:19

don; i rest my case....

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#20 Don Capps

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 01:21

Originally posted by dbw
don; i rest my case....


Apparently it is a grave sin to be old or actually have experience in the cyber-world. ;)

#21 David Birchall

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 01:33

Originally posted by dbw
IMHO i think the issue of getting older has a great deal to with all this to do.


Unfortunately I have to agree :(


As regards the thread that Don referred to; I lost interest in F1 in the sixties too and I was just a teenager~but to me the cars looked like sausages slung between 4 poached eggs and there wasnt enough ketchup to make them interesting... I have only recently started to watch F1 again and it occurs to me that someone much more erudite than me commented a few years ago,
" When the cars are really good the Germans and Anglos do well, when the cars are bad, the Latinos do well and that is when it gets interesting" (Paraphrase) Buford is right about Montoya I think. He may be the next Gille V.

All forms of motorsport have changed (whether evolved is the right term or not), my main motorsport interest is Historic racing. The difference between now and 25 years ago is incredible! Transporters, big buck restorations, safety, safety, safety. And no one will persuade me that a Porsche nine bloody eleven is a "Vintage Race Car".

Unlike DCN and others I actually enjoyed the Dust Bowl GP yesterday. I was happy to see another country involved. Delighted to hear that they had spent $150 million on the track and thought that the spread of F1 outside its historic operating area was very healthy. The "Other" teams just have to catch up to Ferrari. Jeez, I hope they do soon!
David B

#22 Mox

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 02:04

These are different times, Don. It's a different world.

It might not be pretty, nor ideal in any way, but it is the harsh realities of life.

F1 isn't the same as it used to be. Neither is anything else. Better or worse? Who am I to say - I've only watched since the late 70s. But what saddens me greatly is when people refer to "the old days" as a solution to the problems facing the sport of today, not accepting that things are different now.

Back in "the old days", F1 was a niche sport for "gentlemen" who could smoke two packs a day and go on a drinking binge on saturday, then race Monaco on sunday.

Not any more.

Back then, people bought DFVs and slapped them on the back of some homemade chassis, fitted street-tyres, took to the spontaneously arranged road-circuits and crashed to their deaths in hurdling fireballs, often taking spectators along with them.

Not any more.

In "the old days", team orders were called "gentlemen's agreements" and saw drivers give up on championships to hand over their cars mid-race to their team mates out of sheer respect and regard for each other.

Not any more.

In "the old days", if you wanted to see a race, you'd have to go to the track. If you wanted to follow the sport, you had to search for the little snippets of media coverage that would keep you up to date - especially if you lived outside the major GP-holding contries.

Not any more.


These days superfit top-athletes race state of the art machines faster than ever round specially built circuits for incredible amounts of money, while billions of spectators world wide watch it live on TV, and discuss it on the internet.
I doubt it if any other sport has developed as much in every aspect as Formula One Racing has over the last 50 years.

It's a different world, Don. These are different times.

#23 Option1

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 02:15

I think the thing that gets me most (and it was kinda/sorta what I was hinting at in my original post asking Don's point) is that not only is there a whole history of Grand Prix racing that dates back well before 2001, heck I've been told that some of it even dates back before 1950, but there is also a whole heap of motorsport OTHER THAN F1 now. I'm given to understand that some of those other forms of alleged motorsport that are alleged to exist now also (allegedly) have some history associated with them.

As I've made clear before, I do enjoy F1 now days, but gawdhelpme if I should be so blind as many of the "F1 Cultists" (great term Don) and lose sight of the whole range of granduer that is motorsport in all its glory and its history.

Neil

#24 Don Capps

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 03:00

Originally posted by Doug Nye
For decades Formula 1 racing has intrinsically been a heap of crap.

Am I right - or is this merely the rambling of another starry-eyed kid, who has suddenly been startled into growing up (or growing old?).


At some point I intend to write a column for the RVM entitled:

Temporal Consciousness Among Formula 1 Cultists on the World Wide Web

or

Rose-tinted Glasses as Metaphor by the Anti-historical


Consider that for a bit.....

#25 oldtimer

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 03:06

Originally posted by Don Capps


Different, most definitely, but certainly not Good.


Different from what went before in several ways, not a few of which I find objectionable. I, who has also been following F1 for more than 50 years, whose favourite car is the 1939 W154, have mumbled complaints in this forum about the state of contemporary F1 for some years.

But there are some aspects in which it is not different from what has gone before. We have 2 or 3 major car manufacturers who have no interest whatsoever in taking 2nd place to those Italians. And we have a driving champion who clearly enjoys showing his challengers how it can be done, even after 10 years at the top. Not the most admirable sportsman, but whoever is going to beat him will have to bring a wide range of high level racing skills to the table.

Underneath the sickly icing can be found pockets of steely determination, skill, hard work, ingenuity and a lot of grinding of teeth. In this, it is no different from any other era. Who wouldn't like to be a fly on the wall listening to Frank Williams discussing his team's performance at Bahrein? Not much different from Tony Vandervell asking why that throttle connection had broken yet again, I bet.

As for the mud-slinging that passes for discussion on the 'net, Don, you might enjoy looking at some of the stuff that passed as debate when the printing press came on the scene. Particularly at the time of the Reformation. The 'net has opened up the opportunity for the expression of uniformed, illogical, poorly written and rude opinions as well as their counter-parts.

It appears that Don has bumped into the old adage, "Where ignorance is bliss, 'tis folly to be wise." in his visits to the Other Place.

#26 D. Heimgartner

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 03:52

I think I'm going to set up residence in the TNF. Here, at least, I find others with whom I can commiserate the present and digress into the past. And, for the optemists among us, anticipate a better future:

5/23/2004

8/29/2004

10/10/2004

10/24/2004




:cool:

#27 stuartbrs

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 08:31

Don , may I ask a question.

As a 30 something follower of F1, Ive watched things change from about 1980 or so, as a young lad I found F1 to be utterly brilliant, but lately, over the last 3 years or so, ive lost that boyish enthusiam for the sport, and seriously question getting up at 1am to watch a race nowadays when I have to be at a meeting at 8am the next day...so instead Ive gotten back into reading a lot about eras gone past, particularly the turbo era and those early 80`s years. My question is, after re-reading a lot of those race reports and comments from the 80`s, people were utterly fed up with firstly the ground effects era, saying how the cars had become stiffly sprung Karts which gave the driver no joy whatsoever and left him unable to demonstrate his skill, and secondly, that the fuel economy runs of the mid-eighties were no way to go motor-racing, particularly not F1, it actually sounds similar to what I`m reading about today`s F1, in that the "traditionalists" ( sorry, Im not sure what word I should use there, trying not to be disrespectful ) are losing interest in what is supposed to be the pinnacle of motor"sport". F1 seems to me to have been in decline for decades now...but to me, those years of the eighties seemed full of excitement and drama, with real men in real machines...its all just so clinical to me nowadays, but those who have only known the sport for a few years see through the same eyes I once did...have you ever lost interest and then regained it? Can you ever envisage, in reality, F1 returning to something that can bring us back to actually looking forward to it, rather than just following it out of habbit? Or maybe, just maybe, that once that spark of boyish enthusiam is extinguished, that no matter what, its just impossible to re-ignite...? Again, Im trying to be respectful here, I`m asking this seriously, a younger man asking a more experianced man his views.

#28 dbw

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 08:45

it's late so this is an incomplete ramble...when i first saw "the graduate" i thought kathrine ross[elaine] was hot and anne bancroft [mrs robinson ]was impossibly old...years later elaine seemed childlike and mrs robinson was REALLY HOT :clap: recently seeing ms bancroft she's beginning to look old again...i guess my point is that over time things change in a certain manner and our persception of those changes are not necessarily related in a predictable way...the constants are the inexorable passage of time and the flowing river of events...i think when young we are flowing more easily with the constant changes....as we age and collect our fading poleroids of memories [and even more faded negatives of times before us] we tend to refer to the comfort of our still images as we shut the curtains on the windows of our bullet train with the present hurtling past the window...it's not all that black and white of course and permeations abound....for myself the process seems to be accelerating...and now at the far end of my fifties i find myself seeking comfort in the times that [sort of ] made sense. one that i felt a part of...

another thought...i have been vintage racing for THIRTY years straight with no time outs...i seem to be afflicted with the "rose colored goggles"syndrome...the old days were softer,more fun....now it seens to be almost a chore...what with kids driving[quite well thank you] in diapers when i started...it seems hard to relate to them as they posess an attitude gifted to youth....you admire the "old pros" until you realize eventually you've become one and cannot ever go back. i think now,more than ever,maybe,just maybe, thomas wolf was correct.

#29 Buford

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 08:46

I can't speak for Don. I think the loss of the cool tracks and distinctive cars can do nothing but keep me thinking the past was better. But if they made the cars capable of passing and repassing, put drivers in them who knew how to race and not just fast lap, and if they had at least 3 teams that were seriously competitive and the rest competitive among themselves in a second pack, it certainly would have me saying, "Hey, this is the best I've seen in a long time."

#30 ensign14

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 08:50

Originally posted by Doug Nye


Really? After watching the Camel-Dung Grand Prix yesterday I must confess I was really quite depressed to see how a pretty strong cross-section of computer-age younger enthusiasts announced how exciting the circuit seemed to them, and what a wonderful flow it offered. I must say the sporting nature of that place has totally escaped me....

I was thinking more in the sense of contrived close finishes - pace cars, no more aggregate times, shorter races, turning races into 3-4 sprints, only V10s allowed &c, rather than the Spectacle. The dumbing down of GP driving is one of the more depressing aspects of F1; no more Giovanna Amatis being woefully slow because they have to do things like change gear.

And if F1 was meant to be the acme of technology without restraint, where are the 12 wheel drive 56 litre turbos with teardrop bodywork?

#31 Garagiste

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 11:56

It would seem that rose-tinted spectacles = blue touch paper!
For many years now I’ve been reading Roebuck’s column in Autosport. On a pretty much weekly basis he laments the current state of F1, comparing it to how it was twenty years or so ago. I can see where he is coming from too – though I wasn’t watching any motorsport regularly enough to be able to honestly say that he’s correct.
A while back, they reprinted one of his columns from the 1970s, the era he wistfully looks back to these days – well blow me down if he wasn’t saying exactly the same things about the current state of F1 then, and how much better it was twenty years earlier!
Now I’m prepared to accept that maybe there has been a slow decline and the racing has become steadily worse – but it also seems to me that it was always “better in the old days”, even when it wasn’t really. Or not all the time, at least.
If anybody really went so far as to suggest that you have no business being critical of F1, then they’re clearly ignorant, so why not ignore the pimply little berks? Instead, you seem to be on a crusade to tell them that they have no right to be enjoying today’s racing if they haven’t studied that which took place thirty years before they were born, which is just as big a pile of cobbler’s IMHO.

#32 petefenelon

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 12:02

And while we're at it - three-stop 190-mile races are not Grands Prix. Especially when the only imperative is "don't lose time in the pits".

If I wanted to watch 50 miles of racing with minimal overtaking I'd devote my life to F3, where the slug-like pace of the cars is matched only by their leech-like grip.

#33 Don Capps

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 13:07

For those who write off some of the comments and thoughts that I have expressed to "being older," well, yes, Doh! That some seem to equate this with senility or as some form of a character fault, well.... In my day job, it is possible that many aspects of what I do could be handled by someone much younger and with far less experience -- he would certainly be cheaper. However, over three and a half decades of military service means that I have a sense of what the nuances are in a situation, what questions should be asked and what an answer "really means," the ability to "see" the battlefield or situation, know the context of a situation, be able to discern the "deep battle" as decisions need to be made, and generally be able to just "know things" -- why should my view of F1 be any different from how I view other aspects of life?

One of the reasons that experience and the knowledge of context and history in the arena of F1 seems to be so little, well, appreciated is not the precise word I would use, but it will suffice, is that it usually does not focus on the immediate period at hand as solely an end unto itself. It factors in the preceding periods and places things is something of a context and is often reluctant to use superlatives.

The ground effects era in F1 was an abysmal time in may ways, the cars being reduced to overpowered go-karts. This combined with tires that were to be used strictly for qualifying and then the turbo pop-off values and the fuel economy measures generally reduced F1 to a shambles in my eyes during this dim period of its history. Then came the electronic wizardry period. Mixed in amongst all this was the revolution of creeping Gekkoism. Factor in the FIASCO War and its aftermath, F1 closing its doors to immigrants and becoming an incestuous series, the Cult of F1 finding its True Voice with the World Wide Web, and the bubble once being lost stays elusive.

The 1980's were not a great era for F1. Neither were the 1990's. The 1970's? I don't know, since there were some very serious infrastructure issues which plagued GP racing. However, there are some elements which were present which at least made it interesting. The 1960's? Another question mark. There were good and not so good elements to this era, but it existed during a period of great interchange between series. The 1950's? Chaotic, idiocyncratic, violent, colorful, and fairly insular might be a way to look at this period. The 1940's? The Forgotten Years. The 1930's? Although the latter part of this period is often called "The Golden Era of Grand Prix Racing," I take some exception to that title simplely because the Germans squashed any real life out of the art of GP racing. Stir in the very real effects of the Depression and you see a slightly different world.

I see F1 in 2004 as a series being very much lost in its own hoopla. It has developed a very powerful addiction to a most addictive drug -- money -- and cannot kick the habit of wanting more and more of it although any return from that "investment" is more and more questionable. The F1 Cult has little in the sense of reference points, rarely having much of an interest outside the current years. As mentioned, if expectations are low, success is assured and it seems that the F1 Cult has truly low expectations.

I perhaps dies not say much about me to say that for decades after I consigned F1 to the dustbin, that I have continued to keep a steady eye on it, mostly in the forlorn hope that I would be proven wrong as to the nature of F1 and where the path was heading. In the early 1980's, my interest was more firmly pointed towards NASCAR, IMSA, and CART. F1 was an interest, not a passion. I kept adding materials since that is what historians do -- someday you know that you will have to sort out the bodies so best to take DNA samples and so forth while you can.

If the F1 Cult is happy, I wonder if it is my place to pull back the curtain. However, it is certainly my place to point out that there is a curtain.

I am but one small voice here in the relative wilderness of this forum. Through the great fortune of sheer happenstance and dumb luck, we have a platform to muse aloud about those items which might otherwise remain unspoken.

Besides, a series unquestioned is a series unlived....

#34 Mickey

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 13:48

Having been the one that started the aforementioned RC thread, I feel compelled to reply here.

Being in my 30ies, unfortunately I haven't been exposed nearly enough to pre-1980 racing. However, the little I've managed to watch and read about never ceases to fascinate me. For these reasons I'm envious of people who've followed motor racing religiously for the last five decades. I might boast the same level of knowledge in 30 years or so if I'm still alive, but it won't be the same golden decades, will it? Those racing times are long gone; I'll never get to experience any of that first hand, and it's a shame.

However, I can experience the current times and, while F1 might not be exactly thrilling, I can still enjoy the odd scrap for position (there were a few interesting ones behind the Ferraris in Bahrain) and the odd tail slide (Schumacher saved a good one on his way to pole position last saturday). Luckily we still have some good (even if modified through the years) tracks. Spa is back this season.Suzuka doesn't seem to be on Bernie's shit list yet, and the same goes for Interlagos and Montecarlo.

With all that said - sorry about being long winded - I feel the John Cooper quote was interesting enough to warrant a debate: do we feel the past is generally better than the present, or is F1 in a constant downward slide as far as excitement goes? While I was the one using the 'rose-tinted glasses' expression in the original post, it doesn't necessarily mean I think it is so. In fact, I'm quite positive that racing must have been a lot more exciting back in those days.

#35 fines

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 16:46

Since I work in a supermarket, I caught a glimpse of F1 Qualifying over the weekend when accidentlally strolling past the TV shelf. "Oh well", I thought, " a new circuit! Let's stay for a while and watch." There was this big "cinemascope" type TV which compressed the picture vertically, and the cars actually looked like in the old days! Low and wide, with fat tyres on small rims. I really enjoyed that, but every once in a while my look wandered to the neighbouring "standard" TV and the horror of reality returned. Let's face it, these cars look horrible, and even if they ran on the Nordschleife again I wouldn't watch - at least not on a "standard" TV... [let alone a grandstand seat!]

#36 lukywill

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 16:50

just to ensure you that i´m not bufford as i´m not bold enought.
some action is needed.

#37 Doug Nye

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 16:52

One sad aspect of the way I feel about all this is that critics of the apparently 'Old Fartist' approach instantly trip out such phrases as "you're always bleating it was better 30 years ago" or "you say it's not as good as in the 1950s or the 1960s" - but that's an easy shot which avoids the point.

The REALLY sad thing is that it's not as dynamic, not as scenic, not as plain, simple, bloody IMPRESSIVE as it was even 10-12 years ago...and where circuits are concerned view developments over the past 5-6 years and even over that microscopic time span it's a rolling disaster...UNLESS you're on the inside looking OUT!

Compulsory driver retirement to IRL or ALMS or DTM after six seasons Formula 1 might help...

Huh - some hope...

DCN

#38 petefenelon

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 17:08

Originally posted by Doug Nye
Compulsory retirement to IRL or ALMS or DTM after six seasons Formula 1 might help...

Huh - some hope...

DCN


I wouldn't wish the IRL on anyone, but yes, I like the sound of that.... if the ALMS and the LMES and the Japanese can all get together and come up with a decent sports car series despite the FIA.....

(Oh and maybe when the ETCC becomes the WTCC (and let's hope the FIA doesn't kill it again) that'll be another exit route ;)

I know this place is largely full of open-wheel fans, but for me prototypes (and to a slightly lesser extent GTs) are where it's at in racing at the moment - the only place to see real technical diversity, where you can get close to the cars and drivers, and where you can see races that actually demand close attention over more than an hour and a bit!)

#39 petefenelon

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 17:12

Originally posted by Doug Nye
Compulsory retirement to IRL or ALMS or DTM after six seasons Formula 1 might help...

Huh - some hope...

DCN


Thinking mythologically, Sir J G Frazer was there long before us:

ch. 24 of the Golden Bough - "The Killing of the Divine King", section 3 "Kings killed at the end of a fixed term"

http://www.sacred-te...zer/gb02403.htm

IN THE CASES hitherto described, the divine king or priest is suffered by his people to retain office until some outward defect, some visible symptom of failing health or advancing age, warns them that he is no longer equal to the discharge of his divine duties; but not until such symptoms have made their appearance is he put to death. Some peoples, however, appear to have thought it unsafe to wait for even the slightest symptom of decay and have preferred to kill the king while he was still in the full vigour of life. Accordingly, they have fixed a term beyond which he might not reign, and at the close of which he must die, the term fixed upon being short enough to exclude the probability of his degenerating physically in the interval.


pete

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#40 oldtimer

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 17:33

Originally posted by Doug Nye

Compulsory driver retirement to IRL or ALMS or DTM after six seasons Formula 1 might help...

DCN


I wonder if any of those series would welcome Michael Schumacher... :)

#41 Don Capps

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 18:18

Originally posted by Doug Nye
One sad aspect of the way I feel about all this is that critics of the apparently 'Old Fartist' approach instantly trip out such phrases as "you're always bleating it was better 30 years ago" or "you say it's not as good as in the 1950s or the 1960s" - but that's an easy shot which avoids the point.

The REALLY sad thing is that it's not as dynamic, not as scenic, not as plain, simple, bloody IMPRESSIVE as it was even 10-12 years ago...and where circuits are concerned view developments over the past 5-6 years and even over that microscopic time span it's a rolling disaster...UNLESS you're on the inside looking OUT!

DCN


When I went to the III SAP USGP at Indianapolis in 2002, for my first GP since the increasingly better looking Dallas GP of 1984, I was underwhelmed and unimpressed by the whole thing. To be very brutally honest, that was not at all what I expected. I had this perhaps naive idea that once again seeing the whole spectacle in person would change my perspective, recharge my batteries, revive my long sagging enthusiasm, and generally get me motivated. It had exactly the opposite effect.

I happen to love the IMS, one of the neatest places on earth in my book. I even enjoy Indianapolis more than someone from Charleston would reasonably admit. Even that couldn't save what was obviously a less than stellar show.

Not once did the noise of the engines make my hair stand on end or give me goosebumps. Not once was there any sesne of Grandeur or that certain sense of Being Impressed that a Spectacle should produce. I wanted to be knocked off my feet, I wanted to believe, I wanted to truly enjoy the experience. Alas, it was generally a lacklustre, contrived second-rate road show that I witnessed.

Had it not been for the Historic GP folks, some of the Atlas crowd, BS Levy, and a few other diversions I would have left Friday evening or no later than Saturday afternoon. The race itself was a huge disappointment. Gad, I have witnessed Jim Clark runaways in my time and still enjoyed myself with the other battles or diversions on the track.

Initially, I was upset with myself. I felt I was being too much the cynical Old Fart whose ability to like anything New or Current interferred with his True Vision. But, I had thoroughly enjoyed the other recent races at Watkins Glen and Nazarath and elsewhere that I had attended. Indeed, I was actually eagerly anticipating the race.

I think the accusation about rose-tinted glasses are misplaced. Had I genuinely experienced the sort of bloody good IMPRESSIVE show that I knew that I had experienced in the past, I would have been the first to scream mea culpa from the rooftops and join the Bernie Fan Club.

Despite all the glitches that surrounded the Dallas GP, I still smile at the memories since it was a damned IMPRESSIVE spectacle. I loved the race, I loved the experience of being there and seeing and feeling the cars and the noise and sharing that with those around me.

As ancient as I may be, I am still an Enthusiast at heart, to the core. But, I am not willing to simply pretend that I enjoy something when I don't. F1 has completely lost the bubble on what is actually IMPRESSIVE. Ostentatious is not the same as IMPRESSIVE. I think that is where one of the Great Divides may be.

I didn't necessary think that each and every GP race I saw over the years was Memorable, but they generally tended to be Impressive if not IMPRESSIVE.

One would think with all the money being poured into the F1 rathole that they would do a better job.

#42 Doug Nye

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 19:45

Originally posted by Don Capps
One would think with all the money being poured into the F1 rathole that they would do a better job.


Don - ditto...and that's the REALLY disappointing bit. We have both seen them do so very much better... the 16-20-year old Dons and Dougs right now are being woefully short-changed.

DCN

#43 David Beard

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 20:12

Originally posted by Doug Nye


Don - ditto...and that's the REALLY disappointing bit. We have both seen them do so very much better... the 16-20-year old Dons and Dougs right now are being woefully short-changed.

DCN


I agree with all of this....up to a point.

I enjoyed watching the 1956 British GP at Silverstone with my dad.
Last weekend we both watched the Bahrain GP on the box, enjoyed it, and furthermore enjoyed discussing it afterwards on the phone.

Am I to feel guilty?

#44 Dennis Hockenbury

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Posted 06 April 2004 - 22:01

I have read this thread with interest, as I have lost some of my enthusiasm for F1 in recent years as well. In my case, I believe that this has mostly to do with a lack of competition for the past several years during the era of Ferrari/Schumacher dominance.

I can endure single team dominance for a season or two as was the case with Senna and Prost at McLaren. Some of their races were amazing. With a single driver in control of the results, it is just not as interesting as I would like.

It has always been so in Formula 1 with a single driver and/or team achieving dominance for a period. Fangio, Clark, and Stewart had their years. In the history of F1, there has always been an ebb and flow that moves from seasons of dominance to seasons of competition between drivers, teams, or both. At the moment, I am ready for the latter.

The relentless advance of commercialization in F1 troubles me deeply also. As the income flowing into F1 changed from supplier subsidies towards international media coverage and multinational sponsorship in the late 1960’s, a tectonic shift began in F1 that has led to hyper-inflated team budgets, uninspired circuit layouts with gold plated facilities, and an unquenchable thirst for television exposure and sponsorship money.

This should not be entirely unexpected, nor is it unique to F1. All professional sports have undergone a similar transformation over the previous 40 years, at least in the U.S. Football (American), Baseball, Basketball, and indeed even other forms of motorsport are very different today. Even NASCAR has undergone a commercial shift in the same timeframe that rivals F1 in many respects.

In 1991, the Editor’s Introduction to Autocourse 1991/1992 contained the following:

“As Grand Prix racing moved into its third full season under the naturally aspirated 3.5-litre technical regulations, it continued to develop its role as a high profile international entertainment in which television coverage and corporate hospitality were the key factors . ……… Yet, for all its undoubted appeal, Grand Prix racing continued to regard itself with introspective myopia. While corporate investors still feel that Formula 1 offers unparalleled international marketing exposure, the personal ethics involved at the highest level are such that it is questionable whether it can go on calling itself a sport for very much longer. A highly competitive, challenging, and demanding competition, yes. A sport in the accepted sense of the word? Arguably not.

These words are as relevant today as when penned 12 years ago.

Am I wistful for the “good old days”? You bet. Perhaps this I why I enjoy watching amateur and semi-professional (SCCA) racing so much these days.

Do I believe that there will be a change? Not a chance. But I remain optimistic that competition will return to F1 and that I will rediscover my lost enthusiasm for a “sport” that I love.

#45 rgsuspsa

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Posted 07 April 2004 - 00:05

Regarding Doug Nye & Don Capps views, they are in my opinion on the mark. F1 of today is a television production, and may as well be scripted and performed
in a studio. Utterly unconvincing, predictable and unfulfilling. A method which has
been used time and again in business, witness McDonald's. One can live on it,
but it tastes like dung.

R. Sparks

#46 dbw

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Posted 07 April 2004 - 00:45

hmmm.....it seems that no one seems to want to go back to the "good old days" of invasive surgery with little or no imaging involved..[it's called medicine as practiced in an undeveloped country] ..no one wants to wait a week to read what the race results are..[you can watch it live on a plasma screen].no one seems to want to give their internet access up..[how would you complain anyway?] actually we all want it faster...you can prefer farrah fawcett poster to the olsen twins live but that's just not the way things are...love it or hate it we're all on the same boat...and if it's any comfort remember that none of us are going to get out of here alive.

#47 rgsuspsa

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Posted 07 April 2004 - 01:05

Originally posted by dbw
hmmm.....it seems that no one seems to want to go back to the "good old days" of invasive surgery with little or no imaging involved..[it's called medicine as practiced in an undeveloped country] ..no one wants to wait a week to read what the race results are..[you can watch it live on a plasma screen].no one seems to want to give their internet access up..[how would you complain anyway?] actually we all want it faster...you can prefer farrah fawcett poster to the olsen twins live but that's just not the way things are...love it or hate it we're all on the same boat...and if it's any comfort remember that none of us are going to get out of here alive.


None of which, correct or not, has any relevance to valid logic or good racing for the spectator.

R. Sparks

#48 condor

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Posted 07 April 2004 - 02:10

Originally posted by Don Capps



I just absolutely don't buy this -- supply an expletive of your choice -- any more. I certainly don't think that F1 today is very good. Different, most definitely, but certainly not Good. I have tried to convince myself that I agree with your statement, Condor, but that is simply lying to myself. I just simply find so much of F1 a pile of -- supply another expletive of your choice -- that I cannot imagine finding myself a fan of it today had I not been following it for so long. After watching NASCAR, why would I ever bother with something as terrible as F1?

[/B]


Sometimes you have to search for goodness....in whatever field :) If you go looking for it, you'll find it :) If you choose not to ....then you stagnate.

I'm a motorsport fan - F1 is part of that... I also am a fan of indoor trials - I'd guess it's the slowest motorsport action - but their skill and balance is incredible. Inbetween all that is every motorsport that is avilable for me to watch. TV is essential to give access to what's out there.
Once enthused by them....I can access the net and gain even more knowledge...with more knowledge comes more interest. ...so when up to date on current matters - look back to the past.
And then, wow...great stories - but you haven't witnessed them...so they are just stories - until you see old video footage. Pictures capture a moment in time - but to feel something you have to get immersed in it.


To me, a great part of the enjoyment is that in my imagination....I can be in that F1 car...or on a trials bike....or even in different sports, be doing a downhill ski run. ...surfing the waves etc.
In my own life., I try and experience everything :) it helps in my day dreams :)
I've driven a F2000 car so use that experience to relate to other series that I watch on TV ( or go and see live, because I do go to live events...Brit GPs.....and I saw CART at Rockingham UK ....as well as Ascar . Also had a road bike and trials bike when I was younger...so then dreamt I was the Barry Sheene of the time . Us village kids all went up on our assortment of bikes, racing each other, to Donnington just to see him. Just like we use to pretend we were rally stars and used to drive our bangars through the woods :lol:

To me motorsport is alll about dreaming I could do that....and in my mind I can :) I'm there in every race I see...if not being the driver/rider....then I'm the car or bike....I feel it.

So...Don...don't get anti F1...just pretend you're in that car :)

#49 masterhit

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Posted 07 April 2004 - 03:14

Originally posted by Don Capps

..As ancient as I may be, I am still an Enthusiast at heart, to the core. But, I am not willing to simply pretend that I enjoy something when I don't. F1 has completely lost the bubble on what is actually IMPRESSIVE. Ostentatious is not the same as IMPRESSIVE. I think that is where one of the Great Divides may be.

I didn't necessary think that each and every GP race I saw over the years was Memorable, but they generally tended to be Impressive if not IMPRESSIVE.

One would think with all the money being poured into the F1 rathole that they would do a better job.


You are by no means an old fart for saying that, Don.

At the current rate, it seems we may (God forbid) even one day hanker for a return to these days, which is frightening beyond belief.

The technology is not designed for the sport.

It reminds me of what Harlan Ellison said about computer technology not being designed from a writer's perspective, and the fact that if they built a screen that at least resembled exactly an A4 piece of paper in orientation and dimensions, that would be perfect. But instead we get their idea of what we want forced upon us - a TV screen in proportions. So the technology is not being designed for the real purpose.

The same thing is happening with what used to be a much more interesting spectacle in what we call F1. The design is not meeting our needs nor the racers needs. They have the intelligence, the money and the capacity to do it, but it isn't happening due to a fundamental flaw in their philosophy.

#50 jondoe955

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Posted 07 April 2004 - 03:58

re: Mrs. Robinson. She is only 5 years older than Dustin Hoffman. :eek: It is just a matter of perspective.