NOT the MotoGP News, #BritishGP – “Little fluffy clouds”
“……… And the skies always had little fluffy clouds in them and, er.
They were long and clear…..”
Oh sweet Silverstone, you big brown, hot, hard, dusty dump, how we love you in many many strange ways.
As ever Gareth, the editor, arranged a “care in the community” day out for us. Freed from the bunker we emerged blinking in the bright light. The sky was like a Hockney. Straight from the tube of oils, no mixing, no adding any white. The heat was welcome and wonderful for all of 5 minutes, then shade, shade, where art thou?
The circus was back in town. Everything changes but nothing is different. Old acquaintances still here, some new faces and some faces have gone, unable to make a living in a Covid ravaged world. Without Twitter, you’d miss so much inside info. Without social media there would just be racing to watch and papers to read with their own agenda (Rossi on the front page). And then…. Then you walk back into the circuit and bump into someone who tells you something, and its nuts and rubbish but makes you laugh or draw breath at the sheer madness of the rumour. And now with Suzuki going, well it’s not madness is it. When you are as starved as we are, everything matters at Silverstone. Ridiculous, isn’t it? Yes, but we’d be like junkies without a fix if it didn’t happen. Dickens said it best (he was a contemporary of Mike Scott) “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.” There’s no arguing with that and no mishtook!
Chutzpah and confidence will take anyone far in this world, so armed with our media accreditation we thought we’d see if we could find fellow Vroom aficionado, Michael Hill working in the VIP Village. And guess what? We found him. Security was back-slapping friendly towards us. Michael was charm personified and so was AMA rider Liam MacDonald. You know what, money seems to buy beauty in some respects. The VIP Village was full of the beautiful people. And being generous, it’s not their fault they don’t know much or anything about MotoGP, or even care, but they were there, drinking the free drinks, eating the free food. We just hope they did see bikes racing; hope they did feel what we feel, see what we see and hear it too. We hope they’ve gone home and talked about in a positive “We’ll go back next year” way. We kinda want to knock the VIP Village and all that use it, but you just can’t. It fulfils a need. Meets an expectation and it works. It was bloody lovely to be honest, but just for 20 mins.
We were going to go on Thursday and leave on Sunday after the racing obvs. A broadband fault put paid to that. Some kind of broadband engineer couldn’t come until 9:30 on Saturday morning and found nothing wrong *sigh*, so we rocked up on Saturday, and boy that was different. Last year we sat in a stand and had a ball, but Covid was still prevalent in everyone’s world. This year we thought everyone would be cock-a-hoop at basically no restrictions and would flood into Silverstone like a fridge with a faulty motor. But no. Saturday was quiet – we walked around the circuit pretty unhindered and enjoyed watching qualifying from Luffield. Luffield is a bloody great place to watch from. Watch the bikes come from Wellington Straight, into Brookland, around Luffield, short shift three gears into Woodcote and disappear along the National Pit start/finish line. Seven shades of excellent!
Sunday too was unimpressive with 41,000 making Silverstone look empty. Empty grandstands and empty car parks. Too hot? Cost of living crisis? No Rossi, Marc Marquez or Lowes? All of the above? So what did they miss?
Bonkers all-out brilliant racing in the best conditions ever with best riders on offer (pretty much anyway). Was the racing good? Of course it was; its Silverstone. Fast, frenetic and wonderous.
Here’s a brief resume of what we think of the top 10 riders (headed in our humble opinion by Aleix). Aleix Asparagus is still mad, bad and dangerous to know (we mean wonderful). Viñales will break your heart. Somehow. Again. Zarco just can’t do it. Jorge Martin(e) might get Miller’s seat. Miller is as tough as old boots. Pecco is calmness personified. Oliveira isn’t sure where or what he is. Rins paint the best lines ever. Quat needs his halo shining up and lifting. And Bez will one day be a world champion. We think.
Heartfelt thank you to Gareth for letting me do this. And also to the proper professionals who talk to me as if I’m on the same level as them. To the DORMA folk (ha, yes still doing the old joke) who I love dearly from way back. And to Martin Raines to whom I have so many connections with from Hull (it’s a very small world no matter where you go).