Video Of The Day: The Young Bull’s Swan Song.

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Fellow F1 fans, have we recovered from Sebastian Vettel’s sucker punch of departure-from-Red Bull-to-move-to-Scuderia-Ferrari yet?

I myself am still trying to absorb the…magnitude of it all.

Anyway, before I ramble on, have a look at this wonderful video of his best moments in Red Bull Racing. Better prepare the tissues, it might make you emotional:

 

Don’t worry RBR fans, as the once-popular song* goes, “…every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end…”

And Ferrari fans, doesn’t this make you excited for what the future holds?

*(Closing Time by Semisonic. Don’t make me feel old by saying you don’t know it. Youtube is your friend.)

Limerick no.13: The “Spoiled” vs The “Brat”.

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There once were teammates called ROS and HAM

In Spa, got entangled in an on-track jam.

Lew called foul, said Nico’s move was deliberate,

Fandemonium followed, as the mob took the bait.

Mercedes fumbled and struggled with this comical sham.

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The Bouncebackable Guide: How to Survive The F1 Summer Break.

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Twenty-five days in reality may not be that long, but for hardcore Formula One fans, a break of that duration may seem like an eternity, especially after that crazy Hungarian GP that put our hearts and stomachs through a wringer. So if you’re already feeling the pain of F1-less weekends, here are some tips to help make the days fly by faster:

Join the massive debate/discussion online. The Driver Cockfights. Why is the Ferrari so slow? Do you still miss the V8 sounds? You can discuss these and more via Twitter, Facebook, or F1-specific forums. Some sites are better than the others; there are forums that have fellow fans who will absolutely school you in the intricacies of F1 and motorsport (in a good way, though) and then there are some sites that seemed to have hoarded the most blinkered and bonkers fans. Choose wisely, and remember—no matter how hard it is, always play nice!

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Relive the best moments of the past races by watching the highlights and other amazingly useful and educational videos HERE . If you want to re-watch the full races, you shall need to channel your inner Sherlock Holmes, but trust me, there are plenty of…resources out there.

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Kit yourself up with some F1 gear/merchandise via these online shops: MOTORSPORT MERCHANDISE.COM has a pretty good selection without the usual steep prices. REDBUBBLE has loads of interesting merchandise created by fans for their fellow fans. And in case you can’t afford them just yet, well…there’s no harm in doing some window-shopping or even creating your own wishlists (hey, Christmas is coming, after all).

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Watch Senna and Rush. Definitely two of the best F1-related films of recent years. If you’ve seen them already, watch them again as I’m sure you’ll find more things to appreciate with each re-watch. And if you haven’t, why on earth not and what are you waiting for?!

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You can find a roundup of some F1/Racing Documentaries HERE . Be prepared for some feels.

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Make your voice heard by starting your own racing-related vlog or blog where you can rant and rave with impunity. If it’s too big a commitment for you, seek out F1 sites that accept fan contributions. You never know, you could become the next Joe Saward or Will Buxton (make of that what you will)…

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Curl up with a good book. A good motorsport book, that is. If you’re unsure what to get or overwhelmed by the huge selection, check out http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/f1-information/reviews/books

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See the lighter side of F1 by checking out the works of these talented illustrators: Cirebox http://www.cirebox.com and http://www.twitter.com/cirebox Rathbone http://www.rathbonecreative.com/f1toons.html Mini drivers http://www.losminidrivers.com Or if Memes are your thing, then check out f1-memes.tumblr.com and giggle your heart out at the sheer silliness of it all.

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Want to find out which F1 driver is your spirit animal? Take the F1 personality quiz HERE  and see if you and your fave drivers are really meant to be. (I got Kimi Raikkonen, and yes, I did answer all questions as honestly as I could!)

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And if that’s not enough… Make plans to go to a GP. Whether it’s your first or your nth GP, just do it. Browse travel websites, ask fellow fans for tips, compare prices, collate all the information and then start saving your pennies. No matter how expensive it may seem, the trip is so going to be worth it. You’ll get there, I promise. Harness the power of positive thinking!

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There you have it. So what do you do to ease the pain/boredom of F1-less weekends? Share your top tips in the comments box below!

Introducing the F1 Class of 2014: Through Twitter-Style Poems*.

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(*Expressed in exactly 140 Characters.)

A new F1 season is upon us yet again, and it is time to get to know the new and not-so-new 22 fellas who shall amaze, inspire, irk, annoy, baffle, confound and emotionally-torture us for one whole year through an exercise of brevity otherwise known as the medium of Twitter-style Poetry:

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vettel

Sebastian Vettel

 Seb is a champ, that much is known

He may be flawed, & he damn can own

His job: to race, to fight, to win

Being talented isn’t a sin.

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ricciardo

Daniel Ricciardo

 RBR’s new guy is called Dan

To the Aussies, he’s the man

His smile can be seen from outer space

But he’s serious as heck in a race

Multi 31?

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hamilton

Lewis Hamilton

 He does all he can

Just let him drive, man

Don’tcha wish your driver’s H.A.M like him?

Who chases a win even if chances are slim?

Peace out.

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rosberg

Nico Rosberg

 The dilemma of Nico

Is to downplay looks that makes fans go loco

From the track to the pitwall

He’s the fairest of them all

Mind the talent!

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raikkonen

Kimi Raikkonen

 They call him Kimster

Poker-faced Finnish gangster

Cold as fire, hot as ice

Mind his mumblings, they’re quite wise

He knows what he’s doing.

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alonso

Fernando Alonso

 The Samurai of Formula 1

His brand of tactics? 2nd to none

You must always give him space

Or get a taste of his gameface

Psych wars, ahead!

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button

Jenson Button

 This lad’s quite spiffy in the wet

And he’s the Brits’ 2nd bet

On track he employs stealth

Off track he values health

Give him proper grip!

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magnussen

Kevin Magnussen

 This McLaren rookie named Kevin

May be young, but he ain’t messin’

First race, p2, this Dane is great

Will a WDC be in his fate?

Stay tuned.

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grosjean

Romain Grosjean

 1st lap nutcase, Smiley Giraffe

That once made plenty on-track gaffe

He was mellowed by his son

& now he is Lotus’ de facto no.1

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maldonado

Pastor Maldonado

 He may have a reputation

That he brings on-track aggravation

So now this Venezuelan laddie

Has become F1’s fave baddie

What will he do next?

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hulkenberg

Nico Hulkenberg

 Talent & potential? He sure has them

Eye of the Tiger should be his anthem

Hulk is his nickname

Intense racing is his game

Elephant Balls.

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perez

Sergio Perez

 He was on a high then on a low

A bad year doesn’t mean this lad’s slow

New team & new chance for Checo

His partner? Superfast Nico

Game on.

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vergne

Jean-Eric Vergne

 He missed out on an RBR drive

But with STR he’ll continue to strive

Step up JEV & prove your worth

You just might have a racing rebirth

Go!

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kvyat

Daniil Kvyat

 Daniil may look wet between the ears

But he races with no fears

He deftly stole Vettel’s record

Without causing any discord

Doubt-dispeller.

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massa

Felipe Massa

 For years he was Smedley’s guy

A bromance/partnership money can’t buy

New team, new start & new hope

Let’s see if Felipe can cope

Stay cool.

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bottas

Valtteri Bottas

 Cool when needed, nerves of steel

This Finn’s steady behind the wheel

A hashtag? He is so much more

Ready to show what he has in store

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sutil

Adrian Sutil

He’s the odd German out

Who doesn’t hold much clout

The other 3 are going rampant

He doesn’t need to go stagnant

Find the fight, Adrian!

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gutierrez

Esteban Gutierrez

 He can rival Nando’s eyebrows

Had mild highs & rather bum lows

Sophomore year for young Esteban

Can he become Sauber’s main man?

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kobayashi

Kamui Kobayashi

 Now the Banzai Power is back

Expect to see an all-out attack

Kamui’s sweet but he’s also spicy

His on-track tactics? Borderline dicey

Push!

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ericsson

Marcus Ericsson

 He’s the new Swede on the block

Eager to show he’s fast on the clock

He gets to race a car so green

Can he get points, is he that keen?

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bianchi

Jules Bianchi

 The 3rd Frenchman of the lot

He hasn’t yet shown all that he’s got

Push on, Jules & just drive

You can keep your points dream alive

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chilton

Max Chilton

 This lad Max is a noob no more

Time to show us what he’s got in store

Yes he can finish every race

But a point sure would be ace

Step it up!

P.S. If you want legit profiles, Google is your friend.

How F1 (Sort Of) Saved Me.

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I was supposed to write my own version of an F1 2014 Season Preview.

However,  my heart suddenly decided to veer towards a different direction (pun intended).

This is the story of my…curious/unusual/interesting relationship with Formula One.

I’m not quite sure when and how it happened, but F1 took over me in many ways that I cannot even begin to explain.

It was a slow burn, this. Not a whirlwind, love-at-first-sight-will-you-marry-me sort of thing. I started to like the sport when I was young, mostly due to being interested in a certain driver named Michael Schumacher. I liked the look of his car, decided to know more about him and the series, and before long, he won his first WDC. The following year, he won it again and I became a true-blue (or should that be red?), ride-or-die F1 fan.

Fast-forward to 20 years and I still love it. Yes, two whole decades now. Whoa.

No matter what happened,  I’ve always had F1 in my life—whether in the forefront or in the periphery. Amidst heartbreaks, illnesses, personal struggles, life peaks, plateaus and pits, F1 has been there. F1 is still there.

There was a period in my life when I was just drifting, simply getting by and not having the motivation to try.  I was merely existing, but not really living. F1 gave me something to look forward to, when the days of nothingness just seemed to merge and go on and on. F1 gave me an outlet. F1 kept me sane. F1 became a safe place. Ironic as it may seem, even its unpredictability provided a constancy in my life. So yes, I do get a little defensive when the sport is belittled, or dismissed as nothing but an expensive waste of time and resources. To me, it means so much more than that. As long as I have F1, things were fine, everything would somehow be okay.

Throughout the years I’ve seen my favorite driver of all-time win back-to-back WDCs, change teams, go through a 4-year title drought, win 5 WDCs in a row, retire, come back, and then permanently retire (still hurts, but I’ve come to accept it). My second favorite driver took 6 years to win his first WDC but did so in an amazing, albeit controversial season (many tears were shed during the final race, I tell you). I’ve seen fresh-faced drivers transform from promising, Friday Practice drivers to race winners and World Champions. 

On the personal front, despite a not-so-amicable breakup, I’ve stayed friends with an ex-boyfriend of my friend because we are both such huge F1 fans, and we’ve spent a large chunk of the 2007 season talking and discussing F1 that not a few have begun to wonder whether we were dating or not. Also in the same season, my Dad and sister practically had to drag me to the car to take me to the hospital’s emergency room when I suddenly developed an alarming allergic reaction and had rashes all over my body, and yet I refused to budge because I was in the middle of watching the Turkish GP. I watched the nail-biting 2008 Season Finale in a hospital room, watching over a parent who was recovering from an operation and making sure the telly wasn’t loud enough to wake anyone up (Imagine the screams I’ve had to restrain during the final laps). During a holiday in a beautiful beach, I chose to stay inside our room and watch the infamous rain-soaked 2009 Malaysian GP instead of frolicking in the water, horrible TV reception and all. I’ve had CDs and hard drives filled with racing incidents, full races and montages, just so I can rewatch and relive those priceless moments when I need a fix.  I can count on one hand the number of times I shed tears on personal matters, but I magically turn into a hardcore dramatic actress when intense races yield epic results.

It is the only sport that made me throw caution into the wind and gave me the courage to travel alone. I’ve gotten to know and befriended people from various countries because they are as F1-crazy as I am, and that makes them fifty shades of awesome in my book.

When I first heard the sound of the F1 engines in person, I wanted to cry. Stepping on to the race track during my first GP, I felt that I found my people. It felt like home.

Perhaps in the future I will find the time and the energy to extensively write about all the crazy, wonderful, WTF-inducing things I have done in the name of F1, but from the aforementioned tidbits, you get the idea of just how…passionately mad I could be. No regrets, though.

F1 is an escape, a sanctuary, a balm, a panacea, even.

So when I hear or read various iterations of complaints about new rules and regulations, how unattractive the new cars look, and basically every minute thing about the sport being slagged off, I can only roll my eyes and shake my head. When you truly love something (or someone), you stick with it through the good, the bad and the ugly. It doesn’t mean being blind to the faults, rather, being open-minded and accepting of the imperfections.  The sport has pissed me off far too many times throughout the years too, and it is a sad fact that it is ridiculously expensive to follow—but love makes us do crazy things.

Rules and regulations, car aesthetics, race tracks, teams, personnel and drivers? They’re constantly changing. I’m not always the best fan I could be, and yet, I’m still here.

I’m not even sure if I can make it to a GP this year, but I tell you that I’m sure as hell going to try. I have to, it’s…tradition.

It may not come wrapped in a huge, dramatic revelation, or a Eureka moment-like epiphany, but whether we admit to it or not, we all need to be saved at some point in our lives. I am who I am today because some strange divine machination brought me and F1 together. Life is funny like that.

So here’s to us, F1—we might have had a logic-defying, supercalifragilisticexpialidociously quaint relationship throughout the years, but I honestly would not have had it any other way.

Go ahead and throw whatever you want at me, F1. I am so ready.

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