Wednesday, 3 April 2013
In 1967 the Beatles famously sang ‘I read the news today, oh boy. Four thousand holes in Blackburn Lancashire. And the holes were rather small. They had to count them all. Now they know how many holes it takes to fill the Albert Hall.’
Fast forward 46 years to our winter of discontent. And I wonder how many pot holes Blackburn council would be reporting today. My guess is that the pot holes would fill the Albert Hall many times over.
Just this week I drove in my Land Rover across the back roads of Buckinghamshire to meet up with a friend for lunch. The roads were truly appalling. One stretch of road was signposted ‘failed road access only’ I had to select ‘rock crawl mode’ to negotiate my way over the cavernous holes. The really annoy thing is that these virtually impassable roads will run parallel to the proposed route of the HS2 high speed rail line. I don’t know how much it will cost to bring our roads up to a reasonable standard but I’m certain that it will be a fraction of the £32billion it will cost to build the 125 mile section of rail between London and Birmingham. I can’t help but feel our politicians have the wrong transport priorities.
Anyway I’m very much resigned to the fact that our roads are set to remain in their current state of repair for quite some time. I started thinking about the forthcoming F1 rule changes. We all know that F1 is set to continue along its current path of making sure that its new technologies reflect the modern world. That’s why from 2014 the big thirsty V8 engines will be replaced by much smaller more fuel efficient turbocharged engines. KERS systems are to be given a bigger role to play in making the sport greener. How about F1 goes one step further? Make the circuits more representatives of public roads. Introduce pot holes! I think it would be a great success. Just imagine if a few pot holes were placed on the racing line on the run up through Eau-Rouge. It would be brilliant. It would mean that in addition to Prime and Option tyres, Pirelli could also add their award winning range of Scorpion All Terrain Tyres to the mix. It would be fantastic marketing for them. Also many more pit stops would happen as drivers would have to come in to change broken wheels or punctured tyres. Much more interesting for the fans. It may lead to another vehicle manufacturer joining F1. Land Rover Grand Prix Team. With Land Rover air suspension technology and rock crawl 4 wheel drive systems I’m sure it wouldn’t be long before they would be taking race victories. More importantly I could bask in reflected F1 glory as I negotiate the pot holes of Buckinghamshire in my trusty Land Rover Discovery.
Formula 1 and motorcycle grand prix comment and opinion by John Sinker.Return to blog index