Here it is.......Race day! (You will
find out about the heading as you read on)
I have worked out my day so I arrive at
the track around 8:00am. when they open the gates. They are definitely
more organized this year at Interlagos.
I left the Hotel, attempting to go
across the street to the Taxi stand, but a couple of Taxi's were sitting
at my Hotel and one of them waived me into his cab. So I decided I
would just take it. I get in and say the customary "Bom dia" and cab
driver returns the same, followed by a bunch more Portuguese, which I have
no idea what he is saying, so I have to stop him and ask if he speaks
English, to which he replies No. So I just ask for Interlagos and away we
The drive was pretty quick, and
interesting. At some traffic lights when we are stopped, locals walk up to
the cars and hang items, food and other things, on the rear view mirrors
and go as far as they dare and return before the lights change to green,
in hopes that you take whatever is on the mirror and then you have to pay
them. The cab driver locks all the doors at the first light.
This driver kept wanting to go to a
different place than I wanted. I finally made him go where I needed
to, and drop me off in the right place. I thought I was going to have
trouble with this one, but the price was the same as normal, even with the
Sunday fare increase.
I have met quite a few different people
this year at the track, that speak English, so it is nice to say hi and
actually have a chat with other fans this time.
I go off on my usual walk around the F1
Village and over behind the pits, just to see what's going on. I decide I
need more programs (It's just one of those things with me.) So back
in the F1 Village I see some programs on the back counter. I ask one
of the girls for some programs, she just looks strangely at me and says
"we don't have any". I point at the 3 sitting on the back counter. She
looks at them and tells me they are not programs. I know what they
are, so not to argue, I just asked if I could buy all three. She looked at
them again and said yes. Finally, I have my required stash of
I'm not sure what the significance of
this plane is.
But there it sits in the middle of the track.
I head back over to the Orange Tree and
meet and greet the security staff. And make for the counter, for
my morning coffee and a pastry. While I'm there I bump into
Trevor and Angela again. We have a little chat and they tell me they gave their program to one of
their friend last night. So I told them I had got more and would sell them
another for the same 10 Reais. Trevor gives me a note and I put it in my
pocket. I didn't even look at it.
We're sitting there watching the
F-Renault race. I take a couple of pictures,
A good place to get it all wrong
judging by the tire marks. ;)
After a while I decide I need to get another coffee
and snack and I look at my money only to discover Trevor had given me 20
Reais for the program, he had probably been expecting to get change, which I never gave
him. Man I felt bad! He is sitting in front of me so I tap him
on the shoulder and apologize and give him his 10 Reais change.
The Trofeo Maserati race is next.
I get a few pictures,
trying to be a little "artsy". Not very well I
Then the Porsche Cup race. Still
not what I came for.
I'm assuming "MAPFRE" is a major sponsor in this series. I would like some other open wheel racing as
well, not just the F-Renault. Oh well! There is some pretty close racing
in the Porsche Cup though, so it does have it's excitement.
I'm just sitting
checking the camera gear, having a snack and chatting with people
NASCAR fan getting a F1 education. ;)
A FIGHT BREAKS
OUT! A couple of rows further down, next to the
see some BIG guy bent over in some other BIG guys face, yelling. He then takes a swing
at the one sitting down. Very clumsy fight, obviously both drunk. People sitting close by
are getting more injuries and drinks spilled over them than the two fat
guys rolling down the stands, trying to punch each other. I mean
.............I've never seen a fight break out at a F1 race!!!! It's
not like football, where there are only two teams to root for. Here
there are 11 teams and 22 different drivers, and we all have fun ribbing
each other about someone's favorite. But don't fight over it.
(Sorry! No pictures)
Anyway, I guess the guy that was sitting
down, really did get hurt. A broken leg is what I heard.
Security tried to get the guy, who started it, out of the Stands. He did
not want to have anything to do with leaving. But, hey! When the
crowd is behind the security and the Police come into play, I don't care
how big you are..............you are leaving. In my opinion he
obviously did not pay for his ticket, because at those prices I'm not
going to get chucked out!
After he left the crowd started chanting
something else which I believe had "el otro" in it. Which was pretty clear
what was happening. Everyone believed they were BOTH at fault so
kick one out, kick em both out! Quite Right! The other guy left a
little differently though. On a gurney, with a neck brace, a splint on his
leg and blood all over his face. One of the track medical teams came
in, fixed him up and shipped him off by helicopter to Hospital.
I believe it all started over a seat!
Which are not designated in this stand. If you do not ask someone to
save your seat when you get up. It will probably be occupied when
you return. I actually like that in this particular stand because
you can move around.
After all the excitement it was back to
the good old VIP charity drive! OK. Not as exciting as the fight,
It's actually all the track safety crews and vehicles
The guys in the Fire Truck
are into it
The two English women are sorting out
their positions with their banner.
Getting ready for Michael to come by.
Then the all important "Driver's
Parade". We are all watching the start of it, in the pits, on the
located in our stand. You know; there is something not right
with putting all the drivers together on the back of a truck and driving
around the circuit. Why? Did you ever watch them? Yes they wave
to the fans as they go around,
but 75 to 80% of them are chatting amongst
themselves, with a hand in the air, sometimes not even moving. Now
that is not really appreciating the fans! There are a couple of
drivers that do look at the fans and wave AT them, not just aimlessly.
You can see what I mean by the pictures.
Long wait now until the race. So
take time to have a nap, go to the bathroom or just go for a walk.
Jonny Walker has a Scotts Bagpipe
going around to entertain the fans, and they are pretty darned good.
It's got to be time for the race
Police taking a
break in the shade just before the race.
are ready and the cars come out on track for their installation lap and
take their place on the grid.
Michael and Webber,
As usual we can tell every time Massa
crosses the start/finish line, from the roar of the Brazilian fans on the
front straight, behind us. Already it does not look like Michael will come
anywhere near winning his last ever race, although he gets cheers and
major flag waving every time he passes by. (Did I say there seemed to be a
lot more Ferrari fans this year.)
But I'm going to start a
conspiracy theory now about the "Non
Aerodynamic" covers on the rear wheels of the Ferrari's. Also to remind
everyone of the non movable aero parts. Both Ferrari cars qualified and
started the race with the Carbon disc covers on the rear wheels, however,
both finished the race without them. I thought that was against the rules.
Look at the next pictures I have increased the brightness so you can see
Michael Final qualifying
Massa Final qualifying
Easy to see on both cars.
Early in the race, Massa
and now Michael early in the race,
Again easy to see the covers in place.
Now here Later in the race, Massa
Clearly they are both running without the covers, which I always though
was breaking the rules. Oh well! :) Just thought I'd throw that on out
there for every one to discuss.
Incidentally you can see the loading on the left rear
tires as they go around the corner changing elevation up hill to "Larange".
Back to the race. Fizzy was obviously trying to make it
for Michael during the race to help his team mate Fred towards the
Due to the re-arrangement of roof supports for this
stand it proved a challenge to get decent picture, but I managed a few.
This of one of the Spikers
you can see what I mean here with Scott Speed
Could have bee good. :)
Here come Kimi doing his best
There was some close racing further back
I'm sure they were having more fun than the guys up front, actually having
someone to race. Then again the pole screwed up what would have been a
pretty good picture of Rubens
Almost got Jenson
in focus. Still learning to use the camera. (Well that's my excuse.) ;) It
was great to see Jenson doing so well here; it's about time!
I managed to get a few fairly decent shots as they come
out of Larange and start going down hill again.
Michael chasing down Kimi in the
Last lap Michael coming around in 4th place
and Kimi close behind
race win goes to Massa
2nd place to Fred and clinch his second World
Championship in a row
Jenson making 3rd place and
Michael & Kimi making 4th and 5th
Michael receives a farewell
from the Marshalls.
The 2006 Brazilian Grand Prix is over, a very emotional
race and crowd. Farewell to Michael Schumacher (No matter who you are you
have to appreciate what he did and brought to F1), Congratulations to Fred
Alonso on a second consecutive World Championship, and Farewell to
Cosworth engines, for now at least.
Farewell from Interlagos, Brazil
Until next time. Click here for
all of Sundays pictures
No Post Race party for me this year, unfortunately, but
I have to run and meet Daniel again as he offered to drive me back to my
We sit and chat in the Hotel bar for a while. Fabio is
the Bar Tender as usual, and always smiling
Daniel had to get back to his family as he had spent all day at the race
like me. So we said our goodbye's and I went off to my room to pack for the
trip back tomorrow.