FIA shows favouritism
How can the FIA, and by inference ACCUS in the US, justify the suspended sentence given to Renault? After the punitive decision in the McLaren ‘Stepney-gate’ affair it seems clear that Renault, and obviously Ferrari, have received preferential treatment. Not only does Renault walk away with no penalty other than the threat of punishment (certainly a hollow one) should any similar incidents take place, but it keeps
the win in Singapore. Why is it allowed to stand? I’m sure Nico Rosberg, who was second in that race, supports the decision…
The FIA is a joke and, worse still, so is Formula 1. The goose is dead.
Locke de Bretteville, San Jose, California, USA
Was Ivy’s death avoidable?
I would like to say how much I enjoyed being reminded of the exploits of Bill Ivy by Mat Oxley (October issue). I competed at the same time as Bill (in a different class) and couldn’t wait to watch him racing when I wasn’t.
I remember well seeing his foot bleeding after wearing his boot away on the Isle of Man and cornering with his bare foot.
Most of us were aware that his crash was caused by a seized engine, but Mat did not mention that Bill had a habit of removing his helmet after a race and resting it on the tank. If he’d been wearing the helmet the outcome of his accident might have been altogether different.
David Hunter, Nottingham
The story that Ivy had already undone his helmet when he crashed is well known, but I’ve spoken to riders and journalists who were at the Sachsenring that day and they believe it is incorrect. There was another story going about that he was cruising back to the pits with his left arm resting on the fuel tank, so couldn’t get to the clutch when the engine seized. But that too is unlikely, as far as I am aware; when a main bearing seizes you don’t get any warning, so it makes no difference whether your fingers are ready over the clutch lever. Mat Oxley
Attwood a delight in Dino
I am sure you have been inundated with letters praising the Goodwood Revival and the wonderful people and machinery the event brings together every year.
For me the highlight this year has to be Richard Attwood’s drive in the Ferrari 246 Dino. I feel privileged to have witnessed a master craftsman at work.
Mr Attwood sir, it is with respect I raise my hat to you.
Graham Kiddy, Shudy Camps, Cambridge
Reviving happy memories
I have just paid my first visit to the Goodwood Revival – in fact, my first to any race meeting since air horns destroyed the pleasure. A great day out, fab costumes, lots to see, nostalgia by the bucketload, wonderful sights, sounds and smells. Memories of a lost youth!
Observations: a high proportion of costumed spectators around the entrance and pits area, but a much lower percentage on the far side of the circuit. More interested in the racing?
Impressions: having stayed to ‘the bitter end’, my son and I were able to traverse the almost deserted terraces – and there was no litter!
We’ll make it two days next year.
Ken Faulkner, Paignton, Devon
Do you have Google Earth or Google Maps on your iPhone or computer? If so, here’s something useful to do with them over the winter: first, read Track Visit in Motor Sport; second, type in the name of a town into Google Maps or Google Earth; third, find and follow the track. Then find the track in a road atlas.
Of course this can be done for as many race tracks as you can remember, such as Rouen-les-Essarts, Reims, Chimay etc, and then if you are planning to drive through France, Belgium, Germany or Italy next summer you can programme your satnav and detour to these old circuits. There, and I bet you thought that you would never find a use for those applications.
David Fisher, Sutton-in-Ashfield, Notts
Bell the bike star
It gave me great pleasure to read Lunch with… Derek Bell in the September issue.
From 1967 to ’79, I was employed in motor sport in South Africa. This afforded me the opportunity to meet and sometimes work with some of the world’s top race/rally drivers and navigators of the time. Names such as Hannu Mikkola, Roger Clark, Tony Pond, David Richards, Simo Lampinen and Frank Gardner readily spring to mind.
After 1979 I changed course by buying a motorcycle dealership, but still kept involved in motor sport by running my own team in local motorcycle production racing. I think it was at the end of 1984, after the Kyalami 1000Kms endurance race, that Stewart Pegg, who was also a riding companion, asked me if I could arrange a trail ride with bikes for Derek and his son Justin.
Trail riding involves riding off-road bikes down paths and trails through the bush. There is always some trepidation when you lend motorcycles to strangers as you never know how well or how often they ride. Derek and Justin showed me how much natural talent they both have by tackling any obstacles easily and at the same time always being prepared to be part of the group.
Derek had offered me a lap as a passenger in his Porsche 962 around Kyalami the following year. Alas, this never materialised as the political situation worsened here and international racing disappeared.
Derek, a gentleman to the core, has left me feeling privileged to have spent time with a great driver.
Incidentally, I was sad to hear that Frank Gardner had passed away recently. I did a Springbok Series with him. What a character, with a wealth of knowledge when it came to sorting out saloon cars.
Rupert Culwick, Sabie, Mpumalanga, S Africa
Nelson nearly knobbled…
I’d like to draw your attention to page 50 of the November issue of Motor Sport in which Nelson Piquet Sr says, “Imagine, I nearly lost a championship because I lost my knob!”
Am I right in thinking that if Mr Piquet’s knob had fallen off permanently then Mr Massa might well have been World Champion in 2008?
Nick Chandler, Medstead, Hants