Sunday, 2 September 2012

Belgian Grand Prix - The Quotes

QUALIFYING

 MB: Forget Eau Rouge and Blanchimont, there are some corners here like the Fagnes chicane and Stavelot where you can see where the drivers are making the difference.

SL: Tell us how engine reliability has changed from your day to now.
MB: Well, we'd have a new engine every day.  And the team would have 80 different engines in the system, either in transit, in repair and maintenance, or in the team, in the car and going racing.  It was a crazy situation, an engine would do 500 miles and we were getting rid of it.  It made no sense at all, the teams were just fighting each other doing that, and spending money doing the same thing.  Now it makes a lot more sense that you're limited to eight per year.

MB: If you look at the rev counter in your road car and it's a diesel, maybe it does 5,000 revs.  These engines tick over at 5,000 revs!

SL: Was there a particular bit of this circuit you went well on?
JH: I was very good on the straights!

MB: Two more different tracks you couldn't have, Budapest to Spa.

DCr: Cooling isn't really a problem here at Spa, except in our commentary box, where it's about 900 degrees.

MB: These days we tend to judge the ultimate pace of a Ferrari by how well Massa does.  You sort of assume that Alonso will come in and somehow drive the wheels off it, get it somewhere near the front.  When Massa does well, as he is doing - I hate to say it, but it means the Ferrari is doing well.

(Of Eau Rouge/Raidillion)
MB: Aaaugh!  You love it, you hate it, it frightens you...as they say, it's easy now, but there's still an amount of trepidation.  I saw my team-mate killed there.  I've seen everything go on.  Good, bad, especially in the rain.  It looks calmer in the cockpit than it does standing next to the track.
(The team-mate was Stefan Bellof, who died during the 1985 1000km of Spa)

MB: The HRT is undoubtedly better than any car I got the chance to race, and it looks utterly rubbish compared to the rest of them.

MB: [Alonso] says "I'm driving a red shed", basically, but it looks a fast shed, doesn't it?

TK: With McLaren, because they're splitting their strategies - I remember you always used to tell me "when you do that, you're only guaranteeing that you'll get it wrong with one car".  I'm wondering if this is where McLaren find themselves?

MB: There used to be gravel there, you'd go straight to hospital if you ran off there a few years ago.

MB: I can't see anyone beating Button, right now.  He's got too much of an advantage.  I can't see Button beating Button!


THE RACE

(Of Maldonado's driving)
MB: He says it's because he's Venezuelan; it must be hell on the roads there if they're all like that!

(Of the approach to Eau Rouge)
DH: I've never been down a ski jump, but I imagine this is what it must be like.

MB: Damon, we find ourselves at the Les Combes chicane, where you selfishly overtook me for 2nd place in the '95 Grand Prix on the last lap...

MB: The showbiz corners are Eau Rouge and Blanchimont, but these are the corners where you really make the time up.

SL: Put Eau Rouge into context, Ant; is it kind of like when you go over a hump-back bridge at speed?
AD: What are you talking about?  I would *never* do such a thing!

(On the grid, Marty tries to grab Mark Webber)
MB: Mark!  Can we just grab a quick word before you climb into that McLaren?

(Martin finishes with Nico Hulkenberg)
MB: I'll leave you to the lovely Tanja!
(For it is she)

MB: Ah!  Schumi's car!  Let's just see if we can get an update from anyone on whether the car's working properly...I'm gonna be as popular as a toothache, I imagine...

MB: They said Usain Bolt was coming...I asked Bernie if that was true and he said "No, he's only good for 200 metres and the grid is longer than that."

MB: We're just heading into the danger zone here, there's Grosjean, Maldonado...(he disappears out of shot and reappears wearing a yellow hard hat)...and I think it's better to be safe than sorry through here, cos there's a little bit of history between these guys...what are you taking a picture of *me* for?

(He bumps into someone he knows, who appreciates the hat)
MB: Is there anyone famous on the grid I can talk to?  Who?  Oh, the little man (for it is Bernie).  Er, I'd better take this off then!  I don't think he'll be impressed with that.

MB: Perez here, and Kobayashi, we'll just wander down...I don't know what "doorstep" is in Japanese...I'm getting a bit of a wave.  I'm quite infamous with the other TV stations, they tend to get a bit upset with me.

MB: If [Kobayashi] doesn't want to talk, that's fine.  Frankly I'm amazed when any of them want to talk, they've gotta be so focused.  This is Michael's 300th race.  I did 158, and it feels like someone else's life!  It just doesn't feel like...[he nearly walks into Martin Whitmarsh]...What was that, Martin?  Can we see?  Is it highly confidential, that BlackBerry?
MW: It's a Tweet.  You know how confidential they are!
MB: Whose tweets were you reading?
MW: All sorts of tweets.  There's a lot of information you can learn on Twitter!  It's much more informative than television these days!
MB: Never tweet when you've had a drink or you're angry about something; so, tell us something we don't already know.
MW: I think you know it all!

(Martin throws away, then)
SL: Johnny, gotta interrupt you; let's hear from Jenson, I think is with Martin!
MB: Well, he hasn't actually agreed to talk to me, but that's quite often...JB!  Can we have a final word!  Do you want the lucky nipple tweak today?  I don't think you need it, you're so fast out there!
JB: *Thank you*.
MB: Amazing!
(They talk)
MB: Good to see you so happy.  I'll get outta your way.

DCr: Let's go down to the woods today, I wonder.  Are we in for a big surprise?

(Hamilton carries a piece of his car back to the pits)
MB: A wag in the pits might be saying "is that all that's left of it?", but that was a *nasty* accident.

MB: You brake and you grimace, every time down into La Source at the start.

MB: The Americans would call that a yard sale, because it's all just laid out, isn't it?

DCr: And remember, Michael Schumacher started from 16th here in 1995, and he won the race.
MB: I was one of the people he passed down into La Source, that day.
DCr: You were in good company.

MB: They'll need to pit Button now, because that is *mighty*, *mighty* speed that Raikkonen's found on a new set of boots.

(Tongues firmly lodged in cheek)
MB: Interesting how the Red Bulls can pass the Toro Rossos without too much difficulty...
DCr: Maybe the Toro Rosso doesn't have the straight-line speed of the Williams?

(Schumacher and Vettel have a squabble at the Bus Stop)
MB: I should imagine there's a few choice German words going on there inside both helmets!

MB: Carefully taking that rip-off out to the side so it doesn't go in your own airbox...

TK: Jenson Button's only problem today: the radio is a bit crackly, apparently.
DCr: Like listening to Radio Luxembourg, circa 1965.

MB: Let's talk about Lotus.  We always say they could, should win the race, and then the Grand Prix rocks up and they're nowhere.

MB: It looks like there's fundamental pace in that car, and then they fall backwards in the race, or trip over something.

MB: [The stewards] need to make sure they've got hotel rooms booked because they're going to be very busy tonight.
...
DCr: Can I kip on your floor tonight?  We're going to be here very late...

TK: Vettel's been on the radio complaining about his general position in life - erm, this race, I should say.

MB: Other than the start, I think we've seen some superb driving.  The GP2 drivers would just have barrelled each other off the track!

MB: He put Jessica's wetsuit on because he'd forgotten his, to do a triathlon.  He's been so fast since that tightened up on him in the water, hasn't he?  Maybe that's the secret.

MB: The fastest lap of the race was done by Bruno Senna!  Last time a Senna did the fastest lap of a race was Donington 1993.

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