Formula 1

“You may think that’s not cricket, but it’s not cricket anyway: it’s motor racing!” — Murray Walker, 1999 San Marino GP

This page was last modified on 29 April 2014

Contents

British Grand Prix at Silverstone 1998 – pictures from the free practice day at the 1998 British Grand Prix F1 meeting at Silverstone, on Friday 10th July:

Damon Hill – not your usual fanclub page: instead, a description of the occasion that I first saw him (and live motorsport!) in person. It will soon have extra-special closeup pictures of Damon at his last British GP weekend...

Miscellaneous photos – Goodwood Festival of Speed, Silverstone pitlane.

Imola 1994 – A look back at the tragic episode that F1 went through in spring 1994, focusing on how the events were reported and their effect.

Introduction

I became interested in F1 when I happened to see a Grand Prix on TV at school. It was the 1992 Portuguese GP in which the veteran Italian driver Ricardo Patrese had a misunderstanding with Gerhard Berger.

Patrese followed Berger’s McLaren round the final corner of the Estoril circuit at two-thirds distance in the race, and Berger aimed his car into the pitlane and hit the brakes. Patrese couldn’t avoid him and his right front wheel tagged Berger’s left rear: with shocking severity, Patrese’s Williams reared up so that it was pointing straight at the sky, flying along belly-first at 160 mph. For a terrifying moment, it looked as if the car was going to land upside-down crushing the driver, but it somehow ended up landing right by the pit wall on its underside, showering the track with bits of itself. When the battered remains had slid to a halt, Ricardo simply lifted his visor, unclipped his belts and — visibly shaken but otherwise all right — clambered out of the car and over the pit wall.

Needless to say, this made something of an impression on me and I resolved to watch some more races. I have hardly missed one since then, in fact, and I’ve attended the British Grand Prix meetings (qualifying days) each year since 1995 (farcical 2000 excepted).