AGP F1 – Tuesday

Another beautiful sunny warm day at Albert Park in Melbourne making ready for the Qantas Formula One Australian Grand Prix. The F1 teams continue to unload and unpack. More bits and pieces of race cars began to appear. The Mercedes team seemed alone in doing nothing. Its large distinctive packing crates remained unmoved, unopened and untouched. They must know something the rest don’t know.

Current V8 Supercars points leader, JAMIE WHINCUP of the Triple 8 Holden team had fun driving one of JENSON BUTTON’s F1 car around the track. How sweet the sound! The drivers swapped cars for the four laps, a la Tradin’ Paint at Indianapolis Motor Speedway years ago with JEFF GORDON and JPM when he was still racing F1.

APP Corporation, the new engineering construction company hired by the Australian Grand Prix Corporation, has been making some changes while building the circuit. This year all the offices dealing with the National Support categories are housed with their series – a long far way from the F1 paddock. The only support series cars to have arrived so far are a few of the fabulous Shannon’s Historic Demonstration cars. They each are housed in a tent suitably labeled with owner and car information. When all is in place, it will be worth the hike.

One of the hardest working groups of the many CAMS volunteer race officials was the A Team, busy hustling needs and necessities for the marshals and putting things together. This is one team unique to AGP, named after the TV show about misfits pulling off impossible tasks. They are a favorite of BERNIE ECCLESTONE and one year had their very own A Team Formula One tabards.

They are known as merry pranksters and have pulled off many varied and clever tricks, the stuff of which legends are made. Even Bernie has been on the receiving end.

One serious task they pulled off in Adelaide was helping the Williams F1 team. Its engines were delayed and arrived the day before the cars took to the track. None of the other teams would loan Williams their fork lifts, so the A Team muscled the crates into place and NIGEL MANSEL and NELSON PIQUET got on track as scheduled. This especially annoyed rivals Ferrari and McLaren. One of the team’s grateful sponsors, Beltin Beer of Germany, suitably rewarded the crew.

Wednesday will be a very busy day at the track. In addition to the new Mercedes road car doing laps and FIA Track Inspection, the Medical Team will be doing several exercises including a full worse-case scenario. The Senior race officials will be holding their pre-race briefings. New things are in store. Stay tuned.

Last Modified on March 23, 2010
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