Reflecting on a crazy weekend in the motorsport world
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What a weekend of motorsport and how fans of Formula One must be wondering what has happened to their sport. Again, the only interesting thing to come out of Bahrain was the unfortunate incident where Kimi Raikkonen ran over one of his pit crew. For the rest of the race — eh.
Mind you, our Brendon Hartley better get a move on, as the only person you really want to beat in motorsport is your teammate. In this case Pierre Gasly finishing fourth compared to Hartley's on track position of 13th before being pinged back to 17th is not a good look.
Over to the good stuff now. The Supercars in Tasmania continued to prove it's anyone's game to see how that championship will pan out. The new qualifying format should be introduced for all rounds as the drivers have to either roll the dice and strategize it, or go flat out and skip Q1.
As for the racing, you couldn't have guessed it, especially with Craig Lowndes picking up the win. Shane van Gisbergen must be wondering what's going on. He landed in Tasmania leading the championship and flew home fifth on the table.
The man that is being touted as one to challenge the established guns, Chaz Mostert, had probably his worst weekend (other than the Bathurst crash) since entering the main game. In fact, Tickford and Nissan had a weekend they'd rather forget. On the flip side we saw rookie Jack Le Brocq pick up a fifth and a 10th. Bring on Phillip Island.
A side note to the Tasmanian round was the announcement by Holden that they are putting the development of the V6 engine on hold. Good to see they have decided not to go down F1's road of putting dicky little turbo charged motors into things that should make noise! Maybe we'll see the V8 back in Supercars?
Now onto the absolute hum dinger of the race weekend. Just when you thought MotoGP couldn't get any better, the usual suspects and a few newbies put on the show that defied belief. You couldn't make it up.
In 25 years of covering motorsport in four different countries and racing two and four wheels I have never seen anything like it. Pole sitter Aussie Jack Miller is on his bike with seconds until the lights go out and there are three empty rows behind him and then the rest of the pack — bizarre.
If you thought that was odd, watching Marc Marquez bludgeon his way through the field firing riders off left, right and centre, including nine-time world champion Valentino Rossi, was a sight to behold. Probably not if you were one of the blokes who get in his way though.
Despite a couple of penalties that kept putting him back in the field, the Spaniard still managed to finish 18th.
On another note. World Rally Championship contestant Hayden Paddon is reuniting with former co-driver John Kennard for the coming weekend's Rally Otago. Although Paddon is only racing in seven rounds this season having to share the car with Dani Sordo, he'll still be the one for the 65-car field to chase.
He and Kennard may not have been racing together for a while now, but it doesn't bode well for the rest of the field considering last time the pair raced Rally Otago they won all but one of the 17 stages.
- NZ Herald