Editorial, March 2001

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Current page

77

Current page

78

Current page

79

Current page

80

Current page

81

Current page

82

Current page

83

Current page

84

Current page

85

Current page

86

Current page

87

Current page

88

Current page

89

Current page

90

Current page

91

Current page

92

Current page

93

Current page

94

Current page

95

Current page

96

Current page

97

Current page

98

Current page

99

Current page

100

Current page

101

Current page

102

Current page

103

Current page

104

Current page

105

Current page

106

Current page

107

Current page

108

Current page

109

Current page

110

Current page

111

Current page

112

Current page

113

Current page

114

Current page

115

Current page

116

Current page

117

Current page

118

Current page

119

Current page

120

Current page

121

Current page

122

Current page

123

Current page

124

Current page

125

Current page

126

Current page

127

Current page

128

Current page

129

Current page

130

Current page

131

Current page

132

Current page

133

Current page

134

Current page

135

Current page

136

Current page

137

Current page

138

Current page

139

Current page

140

Current page

141

Current page

142

Current page

143

Current page

144

Current page

145

Current page

146

Current page

147

Current page

148

It’s late February and a group of journalists has congregated on a chill morning to witness the unveiling and shakedown run of the latest Benetton Indycar.

The Brooklands-based team’s new signing Jenson Button is at the helm and he reports that he is pleased with the car after 20 minutes of leisurely lappery. His 245mph best is 15mph shy of a competitive speed, but he is confident that there’s plenty more to come. The Indy 500 is to be his season’s priority, but of course he hopes to shine at the five rounds of the CART series held in Britain — one of which is scheduled for the latest oval to spring up, Rockingham. Of these races, the most prestigious is the Jim Clark 500, which will have its 35th running at Brooklands, the world’s fastest track, in July.

Just imagine if Brooklands had reopened after the war instead of the above being a flight of fancy. Would British motorsport have had an entirely different look? Probably. In its heyday, Brooklands was a tad isolated and extremely specialised. But as communications shrunk the world, its natural link with American motorsport could only have strengthened, making it a stepping stone into Europe for this brand of racing.

Okay, I’m extrapolating quite hard here, but to visit Brooklands is to instil a sense of wonder. The scope of the Outer Circuit bowls you over. That it was built 94 years ago by 700 men inside of nine months makes the huffing and puffing generated by the construction and ultimate ruination of the Dome seem even more absurd.

Scrabbling up the Members Banking, one makes a mental note: John Cobb — brave man. When he set what would become the track’s lap record in perpetuity with the Napier-Railton, rumour had it that they had to massage his forearms before he could let go of the steering wheel. I don’t know if this is correct and, in truth, I have not checked my facts because, even Wit’s a racing myth, it really ought to have happened.

Brooklands was a place for real heroes that was perhaps denied its greatest years — but which was great nevertheless. Let’s hope that Rockingham picks up the oval baton and proves that our lack of a such a track has been a gaping hole that should not have taken 72 years to fill. It would appear that this brave venture is going through some growing pains (Matters of Moment, page 4), but so did Hugh Locke-King’s dream — and that became Brooklands. Rockingham are adamant they will meet their 2001 deadlines (including their Historic festival) but, in truth, the proof of their pudding will be those difficult third and fourth years, when the newness has worn off. So it’s important that you give it your support — be part of the right crowd and get crowding.

Related articles

Related products