Thursday, December 13, 2018

RETRO: A long, forgotten Formula 1 Season...

The traditional season ending F1 Drivers Group photograph taken at Adelaide. Although future F1 World champion Nigel Mansell's missing from the 26 driver lineup. (Image source:
When Car Numbers reflected the perennial F1 Teams on the Grid, such as la Scuderia's iconic No. 27, instead of Driver's personal choices...

Pretty G-Damn certain it had a lots to do with the mistake of getting up at ZERO DARK-30 for the ANEMIC (2017) Yabba Dabba Du formula 1 season finale Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Having primarily awoken and Stumbled to thy Telie' in deference to it being Peacock-lite's', nee NBC Sports Network final F1 Broadcast; Remember Them? As I wished to hear "the Boyz', aka Leigh Diffey, 'Ol Hobbo', aka David Hobbs and Professor Matchett calling a race Juan' last time...

Thus I found myself recalling how it was the Nightcap; Err "Morning Glory?" to the finish of my first Full F1 season thirty years ago, when Messers Bob Varsha and David Hobbs actually called the races live on location for ESPN! While the Pitlane was patrolled by the mighty Biz', aka John Bizziano.

With the Funniest part 'O thou memories of this season being able to still recall the season's calendar I made upon an 8.5 X 11-inch sheet of plain white Zerox copy paper.  Being most proud of my very realistic Heads On red and white McLaren  Marlboro racing car drawn by hand entirely in red ink above a season's long Top-3 Podium's box for my keeping track of the season's outcome.

Not to mention I'd have to wait a further two years before the Formula 1 Circus returned to Americre' to witness 'em live in person for the very first time ever in The Valley of The Sun, nee Phoenix, Arizona, where they raced three times between 1989-91.

As the season's title fight, like most of the late 1980's centered around whom I took to calling "The four Horsemen," aka Alain Prost, Ayrton Senna, Nigel Mansell and Nelson Piquet, for which I've had the privilege of seeing All four in action in Arizona, of all places...

AGS, Arrows, Benetton, Brabham, Coloni, Ferrari, Larrousse, Ligier, Lotus, March, McLaren, Minardi, Osella, Tyrrell, Williams and Zakspeed.

(Per the Adelaide Season Finale)
 (McLaren) #1) Alain Prost, 2. Stefan Johansson,; (Tyrrell) 3. Jonathan Palmer, 4. Philippe Streiff,; (Williams) 5. Riccardo Patrese*, 6. Nelson Piquet,; (Brabham) 7. R-Stefano Modena, 8. Andrea De Cesaris,; (Zakspeed) 9. Martin Brundle, 10. Christian Danner,; (Lotus) 11. R- Satoru Nakajima, 12. Ayrton Senna; (AGS) 14. Roberto Moreno; (March) 16. Ivan Capelli; (Arrows) 17. Derrick Warwick, 18. Eddie Cheever; (Benetton) 19. Teo Fabi, 20. Thierry Boutsen; (Osella) 21. Alex Caffi; (Minardi) 23. R-Adrian Campos, 24. Alessandro Nannini; (Ligier) 25. Rene Arnoux, 26. Piercarlo Ghinzani; (Ferrari) 27. Michele Alboreto, 28. Gerhard Berger; (Larrousse) 29. R-Yannick Dalmas, 30. Philippe Alliot.

Williams "Red" No. 5 Nigel Mansell injured his back in a Heavy Crash at Suzuka, and sat out the season finale, replaced by Team Willy's 1988 signing Riccardo Patrese. While Stefano Modena replaced Patrese at Brabham, making his series debut.

The season was Dominated by Team Willy's Goodyear shod Williams FW11B Twin-turbocharged Honda V-6's, with Bloody Nige' *Mansell) winning six times vs. Piquet's three W's, albeit Piquet scored seven runner-up finishes en route to the Championship Crown. With the team easily taking the vaunted Constructors title.

Mansell and Piquet had a most acrimonious season's fight for supremacy at Team Willy', with the Brazilian Winning the War, but losing the battle and ultimately slinking off to Lotus, with his No. 1 plate - As a poor substitute for Ayrton Senna, who'd vaulted to McLaren for '88.

At this point of my F1 Baptism, I was a total Alain Prost, nee "the Professor" Fan, with the Frenchman being my favourite driver. Hence naturally, I was disappointed by Nelson Piquet, who I've never been a fan of winning his third and final Formula 1 World Championship that year.

Although I realize now, I had overinflated expectations, since it's a rare occasion for a Driver to score three successive Formula 1 titles in-a-row. Only being accomplished by Michael Schumacher, Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton in the last 31 years...

As I'd firmly take to disliking whom I vehemently called ARROGANT', whose now known by many today as Saint Ayrton. As Senna and Prost's intra-rival Scrums are legendous', whilst Piquet quietly faded into the F1 landscape, albeit with a shock victory for Benetton when Yuhs guessed it. His former Arch Nemesis Mansell hit the "Kill Switch" when celebrating his apparent triumph at Bloody Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on Il Notre Dam during the final lap of the '91 Canadian Grand Prix!
Alas, is Formula 1 better off today? Uhm, Me Thinks not really, as there's far fewer Formula 1 Teams, who were All truly Bonafied Constructors. Not to mention the healthy number of Drivers contesting each race.

While the Sport's new owners Liberty Media have done very little, if anything to impress. For which thou Across thee Puddle Hacks' wryly noted a year ago, that the Honeymoon's Over!

Whilst lastly, Liberty's done little, if anything, to move the needle Stateside! And Dare I Say it? Thar' Bastardized TV Coverage AIN'T gonna do anything to move the Needle...