Love this photo, thanks to Mr C for picking it from Gavin's gallery.
Can you believe it is December already? Incredible. I blame Bernie Ecclestone. Here in the UK we've had a great dusting of snow all across the country resulting in all sorts of travel disruption - everywhere except my part of the country, that is. We're missing out! If it has to be this cold it could at least have the good grace to snow properly.
What's been going on in F1 and Sidepodland?
- Pastor Maldonado has been confirmed with Williams, which was perhaps the worst kept secret in F1 at the moment. It is worth hearing what he and Frank have to say though, so do listen to F1 Minute and check out the break-out post.
- Steven posted the latest part in the On Track series. It is a great description of his experiences driving a Formula Ford at Ingliston, Aintree and Oulton Park and I really recommend it.
- Have you opened your advent calendar yet? You've got this far in the Daily and you haven't? Deary me. Off you go, you've got two there look, don't say you aren't spoiled:
- Sidepodcast's Advent Calendar
- Giggles's Advent Calendar
Elsewhere in racing..
- I've written a critique of last weekend's Race of Champions. It really is a critique, I've highlighted what I think are both the good and bad points of this season's event. I enjoyed the event but there is much for them to fix.
- Just sneaking in under the wire, Leigh has just in the hour posted this great little video of a charity track day at Castle Combe last Saturday - in snowy conditions.
- The Indy Racing League (IRL) is officially no more - it has been renamed INDYCAR. I really love that they've made a clean break from the old CART vs IRL connections, the management has been different for a while now and the branding needs to reflect the unified series and fresh approach. This is an essential step to the future but there's just one thing that bugs me. Why is it in all-caps? This annoys my sense of order. Allen reckons it could still be an acronym - but what could it be? Can you think of any?
- Yes, this does mean it'll be the INDYCAR IZOD IndyCar Series (INDYCAR = sanctioning body, IZOD = sponsor, IndyCar = championship). There's something redundant in there. Maybe that's two things which annoy me.
- As a fan of the team for over a decade - and of both drivers for a while now - I'm stoked to see Newman/Haas is running Oriol Servia and James Hinchciffe in a forthcoming test. I really hope they get signed to race for the team because both are top class. N/H are much like Williams in that they used to be a championship-contending team but have been forced down into the midfield by circumstance. That's no slight on Hideki Mutoh though, I hope he lands somewhere good too.
- Check out this mural at the new Panther Racing HQ!
Okay so that was mainly IndyCar this week, I don't see much 'real' news elsewhere in racing at the moment (I don't count 'x wants to do this in 2011' as news) and IndyCar has been asleep for a few weeks anyway so it needed a catch-up!
While I remember, don't forget to phone in with your season reviews. Please do call 0121 28 TRACK (UK), find Sidepodcast on Skype or email Christine(at)sidepodcast.com. I plan to have something in by Friday, don't leave it much later than that though.
Finally, while we don't talk about politics #nopolitics I do find the best way to think of my mad despot dictators is to turn them into figures of fun, so here is Kim Jong-Il looking at things in a variety of jaunty ways. Don't forget to read the captions deadpan. (With thanks to Lukeh for the find).
Have yourselves a great Thursday!