Istanbul is really, really hot. This may not seem like much of a revelation, but it probably needs to be repeated constantly, as everyone seems to forget it. For example, the iSport mechanics were all out to run the circuit on Friday afternoon despite the still soaring temperatures, and when they returned every one of them had their shirt off and was caked in sweat. Continue
But the biggest story of the weekend was about to break open in front of me, pushing all thought of heat based japery aside. “My friend, I have some wonderful news!” Paolo Coloni beamed, coming across the road to give me a hug. “I have just heard from my girlfriend, who has been to see the doctor: we are gonna have a racing driver!” Continue
What are his greatest strengths?
Jerome: Well... uh...
Ho-Pin: Jerome is very good at juggling
Jerome: Ho-Pin is very good in IT. If you have a problem with your computer, your GPS or anything like that, you can call Ho-Pin!
Ho-Pin: Asian blood I guess. Continue
When a driver is late there is usually a very simple reason: all they ever want to do is to sleep for as long as is humanly possible. But in this case there was a more surprising reason: Davide's car was towed by the police from outside of his hotel after he parked it in the market area. When the team were asked at breakfast if any of them owned an Audi they all said no, with the Italian walking downstairs just in time to see his car disappear around the corner. Continue
Christian and his crew were at the circuit until 1.30 in the morning, but at 8.00 they were packed and piling into the Espace for the long drive to southern France, with Christian driving the whole way and asking me constantly if I was alright or needed a stop: I'd had a full night's sleep and was still tired, so I have no idea how they do it. “It's normal,” he stated matter of factly as we pushed through Montpelier, “I sleep maybe 4 hours a night during the season: it's just how it is.” Continue
Sam, Jules has told us that you are the “mommy” in your relationship?
Jules: Sometimes we switch...
Sam: I hope we are not here to talk about that! It’s off the record! Off the record! Continue
Jules and Sam are great guys, and we had a lot of laughs: Jules was clearly nervous ahead of his first race from pole, but luckily Sam was completely supportive of his teammate, agreeing a number of times “yeah, I hope you don't stall today too – that would be terrible...” We also learned that Sam calls his car Mary: he wouldn't tell us why, but it explains why he gave his car a little pat as the mechanics pushed her back up the pitlane after free practice. Continue
But she's a bit up tight today: it's the first day of the new season, and she's always a bit stressed until we're back into the old routines. Which is why she forced me to come and write this blog now, while the kitchen is still run at full steam. They're cooking fish at the moment, which isn't the most pleasant atmosphere in the world. So if this blog stinks, I can only apologise. Continue