12th July 2010
Here he comes, screaming out of Copse corner, right foot planted to the floor, demanding full power from the Renault V8 spinning 18,000 times a minute just inches behind his head.
Flat out in seventh gear the RB6 moves across the track, lining up for the awesome complex of corners rushing up fast ahead.
Swooping down and left through Maggots with not a hint of throttle lift before swinging hard right for the first of the Becketts ‘S’ bends, wheel rims pushed way out of the Bridgestone tyres as the rubber sticks like gum to the asphalt below.
Pulling the car right and slightly uphill he arrows into the left that follows, hooking sixth gear, and then the pole position man disappears over the crest of the rise.
10 seconds of mind-numbing flat-out Formula 1 fever.
Turn your head back to the right and you’ll soon see Webber, Hamilton, Alonso, Kubica et al perform this seemingly physics-defying performance at what is arguably F1’s most impressive section of track.
Sure, Turn 8 at Istanbul Park is quick, and the La Source-Eau Rouge-Raidillon cliff face of corners at Spa is daunting, but for sheer-balls out – see how well a car is working – feel the strain of the tyres – gasp at the razor-sharp direction change – marvel at the G-load – this is the place to be.
“But on TV it looks easy,” I hear you say.
Just as it does with top-drawer downhill ski racing the television lens can be deceiving, flattening out the gradients, straightening the turns and dulling everything down.
When the British Grand Prix comes around next year, go and stand at Silverstone’s Turn 2 and see what I saw on Saturday afternoon.
Don’t just take my word for it – take Sebastian’s.
“The corner combinations, the speeds we reach, we are all a bit crazy!”
Please now take a few minutes to enjoy my pictures from the 2010 British Grand Prix by clicking here.
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