Friday, March 14, 2008

Parade Lap


HOT DAMM! Time to put away the snow shoes, log off of ze internets and settle down for a long weekend of staring at the telie…

Can you believe that its time to kick off another Formula 1 season? And I must say that this year should be quite good with what appears to be more teams potentially trading places upon the top podium step.

Once again, I’ve spent the whole winter reading various pundits’ predictions of who’ll be the driver/chassis to beat. Yet, I’ve tried to purposely stay unmoved over the weekly scribbling's of the Winter Olympics. (Phrase used for describing the antics of teams manipulating the F1’s winter testing time sheets)

But, it does indeed appear that the Ferrari’s look blazingly quick once again along with the McLaren’s. Williams, BMW-Sauber’s and Renault’s who’ve all spent time at the front of the pack. Although I’d expect this year to be even more of a Donnybrook between the top level teams, while the verdict is still out on Honda, whose cars have continued to pound around near the tail end of the winter time sheets, although both Jense and Rubinoe claim the car much more easier to drive vs. last year’s dud. And Williams continues to outshine its factory backed Big Brother Toyota.

Red Bull racing also hopes to have solved its chassis reliability problems with this year’s RB4 while its little sister Scuderia Toro Rosso has spent considerable time running towards the mid-pack with its Sebastian brothers driver pairing.

Super Aguri is definitely the largest unknown quantity this season with its lack of winter testing while trying to find sponsorship and having only run it’s 2008 challenger sparingly.

My personal favourite for “Underdog of the Year” is still the Spyker F1, Err, Force India Team F1, as it appears that the team is finally pointed in the right direction after its latest ownership change and the massive infusion of cash from Vijay Malia.

Yet, ironically this will be the first time in eons that I will be somewhere else instead of firmly affixed before the boob tube on the opening weekend of Formula 1…

While in Japan, my good friend Yutaka noted that since I’m now rooting for nearly half of the grid. Perhaps this is a signal that my enthusiasm for F1 is waning?

Yet, I’m still hoping that “Jense” will pull a rabbit out of his crash helmet? Can “Fishy-fella” miraculously score India’s first Grand Prix win? Or witch of the Scuderia Marlboro brothers will win this time in Oz?

Will Quick Nick get out pipped by the speedy “Pole or finally give BMW their first victory as an F1 Constructor? Or will Fredrico Suave return Flavour Flav back to the winner’s circle? And having gone against my sentimental choice of The Iceman last year and wrongly predicting Felipe Massa as the victor “Down Under,” I’ll skip trying to figure out this year’s winner… As long as it’s ANYBODY BESIDES Ferdi the Putz! (Alonso!)