We all have our opinions, our favourites and predictions for the season ahead - some of us more tech savvy in this regard than others, but at the end of the day we are all fans, and if you’re like me, with only two weeks to go until the start of the season, things are getting very exciting indeed!! Like a child counting down the sleeps to Christmas, I’m counting down the sleeps to Melbourne and it is difficult for me to curb my enthusiasm.
I like to think I approach this season as I have done for the last number of seasons; without bias or one-eyed fanaticism. What I mean in this regard is that whilst I might have my “favourites” or would prefer certain drivers to do better than others, I don’t allow that to diminish my ability to enjoy the sport or influence my view of the ability of others.
It brings a wry smile to my face as I write this, when I consider my fanaticism in 1989 for example, when I as 12 year old , had all my school books covered with pictures of Nigel Mansell, and Senna, Prost, and Piquet were in effect the villains. How times have changed. That being said, don’t get me wrong, there is a place for fanaticism and I love it! What would Formula 1 be like as a spectator if there were no tifosi, or painfully English supporters being… well… painfully English in their support of either JB or Lewis <= Note: as an Australian, it’s in my DNA to have a dig at the English :p
Anyway, the season is around the corner and whilst the disappointment of our having “Christmas” in effect deferred by two weeks (as consequence of the unfortunate and sad political unrest in Bahrain), I think that this period of delay has merely added to the atmosphere and by the time that the cars hit the track we will all be raring to go. This season is going to be different, and I struggle to recall a season in which there have been so many changes that could have such a significant influence on the racing and results.
Two weeks from now, BigOrangePaul and I will be in Melbourne; we will have walked the track (albeit from behind the barriers), heard the engines (albeit from only the pits), and paid way too much for overly greasy hotdogs and chips. But we’ll be in Melbourne and they’re the best bloody hot dogs in town! We wouldn’t have it any other way.