Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days?

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nate
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Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days?

Post by nate »

Recently I've been watching videos and looking at photos from F1 in the 50s, 60s and 70s. It reminded me just how brutal, and in my opinion flat out insane the sport was back then. Brick walled houses 2 metres from the side of the track, people standing right next to the racing line at Eau Rouge, and almost nothing in the way of driver protection.

It's hard to say having grown up in a different age - and yes I realise there are some folk on here who were fans in the 50s, 60s and 70s! - but I think with death and horrible injuries being such a regular occurrence back then I'd find it hard to be a fan. It was less the adrenaline sport it is now, and more a gladiatorial battle.

No one wants to see death now. It's horrible when it happens. And to be honest I still feel a little sick that my favourite sport is still capable of taking someone's life in the way it did Bianchi's. But I get the impression that back then there was a very different attitude towards death.

What do you guys think?

mac_d
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by mac_d »

I don't think so. I don't want to see anyone getting hurt, let alone dying for the sake of my entertainment. I understand freak accidents will occur but everything reasonable should be done to keep them to being freak accidents. If something bad happens, measures should be taken to make sure they don't happen again as was done with the Biachi incident. I mean, Jackie Stewart got called a coward because he didn't like that he could get seriously hurt and left on a stretcher on a floor rather than taken straight to hospital, or that there were no barriers and insufficient numbers of marshals. There is a story in his book about having a spanner taped inside his car because if he crashed he couldn't get out and could get covered in fuel. That's not being a coward to want to be able to race without ending up dead. I don't know if that was a mentality of the people in charge, the fans, the other drivers or the journalists but I don't think it's cowardly to accept some degree of risk while wanting to minimise it. If I had been alive in the 50s-70s when things were really bad for deaths, I'd feel a little guilty for watching.

Fiki
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Fiki »

nate wrote:Recently I've been watching videos and looking at photos from F1 in the 50s, 60s and 70s. It reminded me just how brutal, and in my opinion flat out insane the sport was back then. Brick walled houses 2 metres from the side of the track, people standing right next to the racing line at Eau Rouge, and almost nothing in the way of driver protection.

It's hard to say having grown up in a different age - and yes I realise there are some folk on here who were fans in the 50s, 60s and 70s! - but I think with death and horrible injuries being such a regular occurrence back then I'd find it hard to be a fan. It was less the adrenaline sport it is now, and more a gladiatorial battle.

No one wants to see death now. It's horrible when it happens. And to be honest I still feel a little sick that my favourite sport is still capable of taking someone's life in the way it did Bianchi's. But I get the impression that back then there was a very different attitude towards death.

What do you guys think?
Death wasn't hidden away, as it is now. So even away from motorsport, people's attitudes were different. The only problem I can recall from those days (I was only able to watch F1 on TV in the sixties and seventies) was that people who weren't interested in motorsport accused race fans of wanting to see blood and death. That was nonsense of course, but with serious accidents being a regular occurrence, it wasn't difficult to see why others thought so.

I'm not sure whether the two are directly linked, but back then there was such a thing as honour in sports. Plus of course a sense of fair play. Whether it is the relative safety of the sport these days, or the importance of becoming a millionaire in record time that has made cheating acceptable, I can't say. But I recall reading about Andretti telling young, brash and dangerous drivers that "that isn't the way we do business in formula 1". These days a driver can't even tell his team-mate that he has overstepped the mark anymore, without the team feeling it should call a press conference after talking to their schoolboys.

I forget who said this (I'm fairly certain it was an eighties driver), but I recall a driver saying that when he was a child, F1 drivers were men. Now they're boys.

I was fascinated by the cars in the sixties, and am still today. I was in awe of the men who were able to go so quickly in them then, and accepted the risk a serious accident brought with it, and am much less impressed today.
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mikeyg123
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by mikeyg123 »

I don't think you can transplant a current attitude back in time.

Had you been watching F1 40 years aho you would be much more accepting of death in the sport because that would feel normal to you.

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Lt. Drebin
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Lt. Drebin »

The sense of fair-play, sportsmanship, togetherness, mutual respect and true friendship between drivers is thousand times better than today's affairs of F1, with fake respect and hidden bites in the interviews against fellow drivers, artificial relationships that brake every two weeks, robot PR's, parking the car in the curve or refusing to move it in the pitstop, lying to the stewards, constantly keeping up the self-esteem saying how the last win was the best ever drive, and you can add many more. Now they eat together once a year and they tweet about it, in those times, they ate together always when they were together at the races or testing.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by mikeyg123 »

Lt. Drebin wrote:The sense of fair-play, sportsmanship, togetherness, mutual respect and true friendship between drivers is thousand times better than today's affairs of F1, with fake respect and hidden bites in the interviews against fellow drivers, artificial relationships that brake every two weeks, robot PR's, parking the car in the curve or refusing to move it in the pitstop, lying to the stewards, constantly keeping up the self-esteem saying how the last win was the best ever drive, and you can add many more. Now they eat together once a year and they tweet about it, in those times, they ate together always when they were together at the races or testing.
I think you are looking back with rose tinted spectacles. Loads of examples of drivers not getting on and poor sportsmanship in the past. Collins and Hawthorn ganging up against their team mate Musso for example. Plenty of underhand stuff was going on back then. The difference was the sport was not as well documented as it is now. Minor transgressions un noted or unreported.

I also think todays drivers actually have more camaraderie than I have seen for a long time. They don't just eat together once a year - The Monaco lot fly to a lot of european races together on the same mini jet.

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huggybear
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by huggybear »

mac_d wrote:I don't think so. I don't want to see anyone getting hurt, let alone dying for the sake of my entertainment. I understand freak accidents will occur but everything reasonable should be done to keep them to being freak accidents. If something bad happens, measures should be taken to make sure they don't happen again as was done with the Biachi incident. I mean, Jackie Stewart got called a coward because he didn't like that he could get seriously hurt and left on a stretcher on a floor rather than taken straight to hospital, or that there were no barriers and insufficient numbers of marshals. There is a story in his book about having a spanner taped inside his car because if he crashed he couldn't get out and could get covered in fuel. That's not being a coward to want to be able to race without ending up dead. I don't know if that was a mentality of the people in charge, the fans, the other drivers or the journalists but I don't think it's cowardly to accept some degree of risk while wanting to minimise it. If I had been alive in the 50s-70s when things were really bad for deaths, I'd feel a little guilty for watching.

I think it would be virtually impossible to be a product of a society that takes health and safety seriously and go back to a time where it was an afterthought and still be fine with how things were then. I do think that I'd be fine with watching it if I didn't know any better though, and would just accept the danger as a part of the sport.

That Jackie Stewart story is terrifying tbh. He had a huge accident at the Masta Kink at old Spa, and the tub bent so he couldn't get out, and it started to fill with fuel. Graham Hill and Bob Bondurant stopped to help him get out, but they had to borrow a toolkit from a spectator to take the steering wheel off. How any of them got back in their cars to go racing again I have no idea.

ALESI
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by ALESI »

Rightly or wrongly, F1 has for a long time traded on the idea of the drivers being 'gladatorial', but then I guess a modern driver's ability to drive to a time delta doesn't really inspire the same kind of awe. Then again, there has always been a need to look after the cars/tyres/fuel etc, and as others have mentioned this sort of thing just wasn't talked about - because why the hell would you? The modern audience is incapable of watching anything without in depth analysis and statistics, I mean I haven't watched football since I was about 12, but if I happen to see it now we're force fed the percentage of possession, attempts on goal, corners, throw ins... on the other hand perhaps if we did have that kind of analysis we might see some things in a different light. But do we want 'legends' of the sport reappraised in that way? Probably not.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Herb Tarlik »

"There is no accomplishment without risk."

Back in the day, that used to mean something.

RaggedMan
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by RaggedMan »

Fiki wrote:Death wasn't hidden away, as it is now. So even away from motorsport, people's attitudes were different. The only problem I can recall from those days (I was only able to watch F1 on TV in the sixties and seventies) was that people who weren't interested in motorsport accused race fans of wanting to see blood and death. That was nonsense of course, but with serious accidents being a regular occurrence, it wasn't difficult to see why others thought so.

I'm not sure whether the two are directly linked, but back then there was such a thing as honour in sports. Plus of course a sense of fair play. Whether it is the relative safety of the sport these days, or the importance of becoming a millionaire in record time that has made cheating acceptable, I can't say. But I recall reading about Andretti telling young, brash and dangerous drivers that "that isn't the way we do business in formula 1". These days a driver can't even tell his team-mate that he has overstepped the mark anymore, without the team feeling it should call a press conference after talking to their schoolboys.

I forget who said this (I'm fairly certain it was an eighties driver), but I recall a driver saying that when he was a child, F1 drivers were men. Now they're boys.

I was fascinated by the cars in the sixties, and am still today. I was in awe of the men who were able to go so quickly in them then, and accepted the risk a serious accident brought with it, and am much less impressed today.
Most of this is exactly what I would've posted. Things have changed societally in the 50-some-odd years I've been around and in that time what is considered safe has changed in every aspect of life.

Factory, farm, and construction work was much more hazardous in those days. The chances of fatalities in road car wrecks were higher because the lack, or lack of use, of safety belts. Every aspect of life was more hazardous, but that didn't mean that people who watched dangerous sports were more callous toward the prospect of death or serious harm. If that were the case there wouldn't have been the slow but steady increase toward higher standards. It's just a shame that in F1 in particular that it didn't have as strong wave behind it until after Senna's death.

Sometimes though there is problems for within as another poster wrote about Stewart being called out for cowardness. In NASCAR it took forever for drivers to accept closed face helmets and HANS devices. It wasn't until after Earnharts death that that changed.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Ruste13 »

Yes. I am drawn to bikes and cars and I dont think it would have been any different if I was watching 40 years ago. My Nan worked in the pub next to Coopers and knew Bruce well and went to some Gran Prix's with him. My grand father was a motor body builder and used to fabricate exhausts for Cooper.

She only talks about how exciting it all was and still watches the races today. People dying is sad but I dont think many people tuned out after Jules died.

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Blinky McSquinty
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Blinky McSquinty »

When Formula One started up in 1950, it was just 5 years since the end of WW2. So being exposed to a motorsport with danger was small potatoes to what went on just a few years ago. In everyone's eyes WW2 was dangerous compared to motor racing. It is a matter of perception. Sometimes one gets desensitized to bad news. Just look at today's record in motor deaths. There are scores each week, yet life goes on, we barely blink when he hear of this statistic.

One huge difference between then and now is the speed of communications. If a driver perished, it took a bare minimum of 24 hours for the news to spread, and in my case, I did not know of it until I read it in the monthly motor news periodicals. Maybe two months later?

Most motor racing fans of that era were severely isolated, we met only at races and got our news and information on printed media, usually never current.

I was there, it was wonderful. Bad news spread very slowly, deaths were not witnessed on the scale of today, and basically Formula One was a small fringe sport of dedicated fans. For most fans, it was a lot more good news than bad, in fact IMO it was a lot more positive back then. Wins and great accomplishments were the news, and any tragedies usually were just a few words on the back pages of the periodicals.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Herb Tarlik »

Blinky is right. Tens of thousands of people die in car accidents every year. Why is one or two deaths in a race every 10 years such a big deal? Sure, any death is a shame, but we ALL are going down that route. Race drivers die doing what they are most passionate about. They do not die to entertain us. That is a ridiculous way to look at it. They die striving to accomplish what no one else can do: Win races, win world championships, set lap records, set all time records. They race to win.

"Without risk there is no achievement".

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by jimmyj »

I think so yes, provided of course there was some way in Canada for me to know about or hear about them. If it was a week old newspaper report, then probably not, tbh.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Exediron »

mikeyg123 wrote:I don't think you can transplant a current attitude back in time.

Had you been watching F1 40 years aho you would be much more accepting of death in the sport because that would feel normal to you.
I'd have to agree with this. Would I watch F1 today if it was like it was in the 50s or 60s? No, probably not. Would I have watched it if I was the same age in the 50s or 60s? Who knows, but it's entirely possible.

By today's objective standards, F1 was rather barbaric in the beginning. It was dangerous, it was hard to watch (you mostly read about it) and it was very uncompetitive compared to the standard we've become used to. But in the 1950s, there wasn't the standard for comparison that we have today, so it's unlikely I would have even thought of any of those problems.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by mikeyg123 »

Herb Tarlik wrote:Blinky is right. Tens of thousands of people die in car accidents every year. Why is one or two deaths in a race every 10 years such a big deal? Sure, any death is a shame, but we ALL are going down that route. Race drivers die doing what they are most passionate about. They do not die to entertain us. That is a ridiculous way to look at it. They die striving to accomplish what no one else can do: Win races, win world championships, set lap records, set all time records. They race to win.

"Without risk there is no achievement".
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Blinky McSquinty
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Blinky McSquinty »

One of my racing buddies once gave me a very powerful statement.

"For great expectations comes great commitment".

That applies to all aspects of life, but in sport is can require going the extra mile and taking that extra risk. By now most of us have viewed the movie "Rush", about the relationship between Niki Lauda and James Hunt. And it was expressed very clearly that Hunt was willing to even die in pursuit of his goals. And that level of commitment is the way with almost every professional athlete. Times have changed, perceptions have changed, we are better educated on risk versus reward, the technology of safety has improved, but the human condition is unchanged. There will always be those willing to make incredible commitments towards their goals, even at risk of their own lives.

Even Colin Chapman was driven to excess. His cars were the fastest but also the most fragile because in his quest for less weight, he was willing to cut corners. I wish I could recall his name, but there was one driver who had the opportunity to drive for Lotus but did not pursue that path because he feared for his safety. Even Chapman refused to develop any close attachments to any driver after the death of Jimmy Clark.

As we watch today's motorsports heroes, their drive and commitment is not different than back in the early days of Formula One. We may pass off some of their antics as being stupid or too aggressive, but they are trying very hard to achieve their goals.

When Jackie Stewart first started racing he was like most. But he self-educated and as he hung upside won in his bent car with fuel dripping around him, he learned a lot in those few moments, and changed. And this is my point, that we know more than back in those days, we have built up more data and are better informed.

In my little sim racing life I race the Lotus 49, and it has been confirmed that the cyber car maintains fidelity to the real car. And they are wicked evil in how they behave, a testament to the development of modern race cars (that are much more forgiving). This car can chew you up and spit you out with the tiniest mistake. And when you take a good look at this car, basically an aluminum tube with fuel tanks surrounding the driver, by today's standards it's freaking insane.

The irony is that in fifty years some of you will look back on today's era and wonder why we were so crazy because it was so unsafe.
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painless
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by painless »

Blinky McSquinty wrote:Even Colin Chapman was driven to excess. His cars were the fastest but also the most fragile because in his quest for less weight, he was willing to cut corners. I wish I could recall his name, but there was one driver who had the opportunity to drive for Lotus but did not pursue that path because he feared for his safety. Even Chapman refused to develop any close attachments to any driver after the death of Jimmy Clark.
I think you are thinking of Jochen Rindt who was advised (by one B.C. Ecclestone) that he could drive for Brabham who made safe cars or, if he wanted to win a championship he could drive for Lotus who made fast but fragile cars; and we all know how that story ended.
To take your post-war theme further I think the British press catered to the need for heroes in an era that still had rationing, deprivation and little optimism. The price paid by these heroes was, occasionally, steep and their rewards, few.
To answer the OP's question; Yes (I was) I was the spotty kid with one finger crammed up my snout going "Cor!" in front of the black and white telly who grew up ( a bit) to become the idiot who would stand in the snow at Brands Hatch for a non-championship Race of Champions or drink tepid brown water at Snetterton during some clubmans meeting. Eventually I became the fat old git who would sit in the stands in Montreal while the weather gods pee'd all over him.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by chaz986 »

I love machine's and fast ones the most so yes I would.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by ob1kenobi.23 »

I was a fan back in the 50s & it was what it was, we didn’t know anything different as we had never experienced anything else.
My dad & Granddad used to tell me how much safer it was as they actually wore crash helmets & had hydraulic brakes as compared to linen caps & cable brakes.

Many drivers died in many forms of motor sport but the first F1 driver I remember being killed, albeit not in an F1 race, was the great Raymond Sommer the first man to win a race for Enzo Ferrari as a constructor.
When the news filtered through we were all shocked & saddened & would be many more times in 50s & subsequent decades.

It is wonderful to see how things eventually progressed with the medical facilities at circuits & the safety features built into the cars & things like fire proof suits being the norm now.

I have to admit though; I do pine for circuits like the old Spa & Nordschleife.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Herb Tarlik »

Blinky McSquinty wrote:

The irony is that in fifty years some of you will look back on today's era and wonder why we were so crazy because it was so unsafe.
Very very unlikely. We have truly reached peak safety. How many drivers die now? What is the average number that die per year? That number is ridiculously low. There is no such thing as 100% safety. To get any safer than what we have now two things have to occur. Either the driver is removed from the car or the cars change to such an extent that it's no longer open wheel open cockpit racing.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Blinky McSquinty »

Herb Tarlik wrote:
Blinky McSquinty wrote:

The irony is that in fifty years some of you will look back on today's era and wonder why we were so crazy because it was so unsafe.
Very very unlikely. We have truly reached peak safety. How many drivers die now? What is the average number that die per year? That number is ridiculously low. There is no such thing as 100% safety. To get any safer than what we have now two things have to occur. Either the driver is removed from the car or the cars change to such an extent that it's no longer open wheel open cockpit racing.
We are far from there. Just a few years ago I expressed the same concerns, and most of the replies were one of arrogance, that Formula One was safe. Yet since then two drivers have perished driving, one in test and the other at Suzuka. In both cases severe head injuries were the cause. Give today's cars a good look, everyone is making noises but he driver's head is still stuck out in the open.

I really really wish that the worst that ever happened was a paper cut. But when you have such a dynamic environment and such masses carrying so much potential energy, safety must never rest.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by mikeyg123 »

Blinky McSquinty wrote:
Herb Tarlik wrote:
Blinky McSquinty wrote:

The irony is that in fifty years some of you will look back on today's era and wonder why we were so crazy because it was so unsafe.
Very very unlikely. We have truly reached peak safety. How many drivers die now? What is the average number that die per year? That number is ridiculously low. There is no such thing as 100% safety. To get any safer than what we have now two things have to occur. Either the driver is removed from the car or the cars change to such an extent that it's no longer open wheel open cockpit racing.
We are far from there. Just a few years ago I expressed the same concerns, and most of the replies were one of arrogance, that Formula One was safe. Yet since then two drivers have perished driving, one in test and the other at Suzuka. In both cases severe head injuries were the cause. Give today's cars a good look, everyone is making noises but he driver's head is still stuck out in the open.

I really really wish that the worst that ever happened was a paper cut. But when you have such a dynamic environment and such masses carrying so much potential energy, safety must never rest.
Formula 1 is safe.

That doesn't mean bad things can't happen.

Personally I think you are right but I hope you are wrong. The world for the more fortunate enough of us is safe enough. If anything we are too looked after.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by pc27b »

i started following open wheel, and many other forms of racing in the early 70's, listend to the history of the sport from my dad who was a fan. so yes, i would be a fan in the "old days" i guess that would make me old.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Herb Tarlik »

Blinky McSquinty wrote:
Herb Tarlik wrote:
Blinky McSquinty wrote:

The irony is that in fifty years some of you will look back on today's era and wonder why we were so crazy because it was so unsafe.
Very very unlikely. We have truly reached peak safety. How many drivers die now? What is the average number that die per year? That number is ridiculously low. There is no such thing as 100% safety. To get any safer than what we have now two things have to occur. Either the driver is removed from the car or the cars change to such an extent that it's no longer open wheel open cockpit racing.
We are far from there. Just a few years ago I expressed the same concerns, and most of the replies were one of arrogance, that Formula One was safe. Yet since then two drivers have perished driving, one in test and the other at Suzuka. In both cases severe head injuries were the cause. Give today's cars a good look, everyone is making noises but he driver's head is still stuck out in the open.

I really really wish that the worst that ever happened was a paper cut. But when you have such a dynamic environment and such masses carrying so much potential energy, safety must never rest.
Mikey got it right in his post. We are way too looked after. A paper cut? That is a ridiculous proposition. It belies a true understanding of what F1 is all about.

"Without risk there is NO reward."

You take the risk out of Formula One and you will end its existence as a sport. Guaranteed.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by RaggedMan »

Herb Tarlik wrote:
Blinky McSquinty wrote:
Herb Tarlik wrote:
Blinky McSquinty wrote:

The irony is that in fifty years some of you will look back on today's era and wonder why we were so crazy because it was so unsafe.
Very very unlikely. We have truly reached peak safety. How many drivers die now? What is the average number that die per year? That number is ridiculously low. There is no such thing as 100% safety. To get any safer than what we have now two things have to occur. Either the driver is removed from the car or the cars change to such an extent that it's no longer open wheel open cockpit racing.
We are far from there. Just a few years ago I expressed the same concerns, and most of the replies were one of arrogance, that Formula One was safe. Yet since then two drivers have perished driving, one in test and the other at Suzuka. In both cases severe head injuries were the cause. Give today's cars a good look, everyone is making noises but he driver's head is still stuck out in the open.

I really really wish that the worst that ever happened was a paper cut. But when you have such a dynamic environment and such masses carrying so much potential energy, safety must never rest.
Mikey got it right in his post. We are way too looked after. A paper cut? That is a ridiculous proposition. It belies a true understanding of what F1 is all about.

"Without risk there is NO reward."

You take the risk out of Formula One and you will end its existence as a sport. Guaranteed.
Define "Risk"
In that phrase risk doesn't have to mean chance of death or grievous bodily harm. Taking a lot of curb and increasing the chances of breaking your suspension is risk but has the potential reward of saving a tenth or two on your lap time.

Yes there are some regulations in racing and in life in general that might seem overprotective but I have a hard time thinking that we're too looked after.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by lamo »

Safety is important but it is at a very high level, the two recent fatalities were procedural errors rather than any fault with car or track design. Both with cars striking vehicles (a lorry and a digger) at the track side at head height, very unfortunate but completely avoidable. We now have the virtual safety car to cover this, but this should have come earlier, the technology was there long before.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by jimclark »

"Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days?"

'Don't hafta think...'was there and it was a better time.... ;)

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by jimclark »

Herb Tarlik wrote:
"Without risk there is NO reward."

You take the risk out of Formula One and you will end its existence as a sport. Guaranteed.

Sadly, it's already done.....

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Herb Tarlik »

RaggedMan wrote:
Herb Tarlik wrote:
Blinky McSquinty wrote:
Herb Tarlik wrote:
Blinky McSquinty wrote:

The irony is that in fifty years some of you will look back on today's era and wonder why we were so crazy because it was so unsafe.
Very very unlikely. We have truly reached peak safety. How many drivers die now? What is the average number that die per year? That number is ridiculously low. There is no such thing as 100% safety. To get any safer than what we have now two things have to occur. Either the driver is removed from the car or the cars change to such an extent that it's no longer open wheel open cockpit racing.
We are far from there. Just a few years ago I expressed the same concerns, and most of the replies were one of arrogance, that Formula One was safe. Yet since then two drivers have perished driving, one in test and the other at Suzuka. In both cases severe head injuries were the cause. Give today's cars a good look, everyone is making noises but he driver's head is still stuck out in the open.

I really really wish that the worst that ever happened was a paper cut. But when you have such a dynamic environment and such masses carrying so much potential energy, safety must never rest.
Mikey got it right in his post. We are way too looked after. A paper cut? That is a ridiculous proposition. It belies a true understanding of what F1 is all about.

"Without risk there is NO reward."

You take the risk out of Formula One and you will end its existence as a sport. Guaranteed.
Define "Risk"
In that phrase risk doesn't have to mean chance of death or grievous bodily harm.
Yes it does. I could have died while driving into work today. I could have died falling down the stairs in my house. There is ALWAYS life threatening risk. Many people think that can be eliminated but it cannot except for one way: remove the driver from the car. Soon that technology will be available and once a driver dies, the calls will be made eliminate driver controlled race cars.

I firmly oppose the incessant need for safety. The drivers race *voluntarily*. If they are not happy with the risks, then they can work to improve them or leave the sport. There will never be 100% safety. Further, I believe we are very close to the point where increasing safety risks changing the sport entirely and not for the good. The rules may change in the future to close the cockpits or cover the wheels. I will stop watching then and I am certain many others will to.

Thankfully, most drivers and teams recognize this and voted down the appalling halo only just recently.

The cars are clearly safe enough. If they werent the drivers would be rallying (no pun intended) to make the safer as Sir Jackie Stewart did back in the day. No today hesitates for a second to get into an F1 car in 2017. They know that these are very safe cars.
RaggedMan wrote: Taking a lot of curb and increasing the chances of breaking your suspension is risk but has the potential reward of saving a tenth or two on your lap time.

Yes there are some regulations in racing and in life in general that might seem overprotective but I have a hard time thinking that we're too looked after.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Herb Tarlik »

lamo wrote:Safety is important but it is at a very high level, the two recent fatalities were procedural errors rather than any fault with car or track design. Both with cars striking vehicles (a lorry and a digger) at the track side at head height, very unfortunate but completely avoidable. We now have the virtual safety car to cover this, but this should have come earlier, the technology was there long before.
Very well said. I agree with you completely.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Pole2Win »

It would've been difficult because of lack of TV coverage. I would've been a fan of racing, though not necessarily F1.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Ocon »

I don't think it's necessarilly blood and death people want to see but it's just the danger itself that is exciting. It's not like people were cheering when someone got hurt. I know I would enjoy racing much more if things were more like they used to be.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Ocon »

Herb Tarlik wrote:Mikey got it right in his post. We are way too looked after. A paper cut? That is a ridiculous proposition. It belies a true understanding of what F1 is all about.

"Without risk there is NO reward."

You take the risk out of Formula One and you will end its existence as a sport. Guaranteed.
Yes it does. I could have died while driving into work today. I could have died falling down the stairs in my house. There is ALWAYS life threatening risk. Many people think that can be eliminated but it cannot except for one way: remove the driver from the car. Soon that technology will be available and once a driver dies, the calls will be made eliminate driver controlled race cars.

I firmly oppose the incessant need for safety. The drivers race *voluntarily*. If they are not happy with the risks, then they can work to improve them or leave the sport. There will never be 100% safety. Further, I believe we are very close to the point where increasing safety risks changing the sport entirely and not for the good. The rules may change in the future to close the cockpits or cover the wheels. I will stop watching then and I am certain many others will to.

Thankfully, most drivers and teams recognize this and voted down the appalling halo only just recently.

The cars are clearly safe enough. If they werent the drivers would be rallying (no pun intended) to make the safer as Sir Jackie Stewart did back in the day. No today hesitates for a second to get into an F1 car in 2017. They know that these are very safe cars.
Great post, glad there are still people who want to preserve the excitement of the sport.

If I go out driving fast in my car, I will enjoy it much more than driving in a simulator and that's because of the danger.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Exediron »

Ocon wrote:Great post, glad there are still people who want to preserve the excitement of the sport.

If I go out driving fast in my car, I will enjoy it much more than driving in a simulator and that's because of the danger.
Speak for yourself. I'll enjoy it more than a simulator, but that's because of all the extra sensory and tactile input you get from driving in the real world. It's certainly not because of the danger.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Ocon »

Exediron wrote:
Ocon wrote:Great post, glad there are still people who want to preserve the excitement of the sport.

If I go out driving fast in my car, I will enjoy it much more than driving in a simulator and that's because of the danger.
Speak for yourself. I'll enjoy it more than a simulator, but that's because of all the extra sensory and tactile input you get from driving in the real world. It's certainly not because of the danger.
That's part of it as well but don't you think the adrenaline surge you get from driving fast in the real world has anything to do with knowing it is dangerous?

Take the Russians standing on top of those towers on youtube as an example. Imagine standing on a ledge 2 meters high vs a tower. It's purely psychological and the danger/fear is what creates the rush.
The person watching also gets a similar feeling seeing it live.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Exediron »

Ocon wrote:That's part of it as well but don't you think the adrenaline surge you get from driving fast in the real world has anything to do with knowing it is dangerous?

Take the Russians standing on top of those towers on youtube as an example. Imagine standing on a ledge 2 meters high vs a tower. It's purely psychological and the danger/fear is what creates the rush.
The person watching also gets a similar feeling seeing it live.
The adrenaline is certainly there with danger, I'm just not sure that part really equals 'enjoyment' in my opinion. You also get a huge adrenaline shot from waking up on the 40th floor of a high-rise and seeing fire trucks clustering outside while the alarm blares away (personal experience, unfortunately!) and that's not something I'd say was enjoyable at all.

I guess it really comes down to personality, and I'm not the daredevil personality type. Most F1 drivers (and successful racing drivers at any high level) probably are, so for them it might equal increased enjoyment. It doesn't for me as a spectator; I don't like to watch potentially fatal events live, and while I do find videos such as the extreme climbing ones you mention quite gripping and exciting, I'm sure I wouldn't want to watch one where the climbers actually died.

Basically, my somewhat long-winded point is that for me, excitement does not necessarily equal enjoyment. I can't deny that danger leads to an increase in pure excitement, but it's not the sort of excitement I want in my sports. That there are repercussions for a mistake is vital to motorsport, but I want them to be sporting repercussions only, not potentially the loss of a life. I have only seen one fatal accident during the time I've been actively watching F1, and the reminder that modern F1 cars can still be fatal did nothing to increase my enjoyment of the sport. I firmly hope Bianchi's crash was the last fatal F1 incident I ever see.
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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Ocon »

Exediron wrote:
Ocon wrote:That's part of it as well but don't you think the adrenaline surge you get from driving fast in the real world has anything to do with knowing it is dangerous?

Take the Russians standing on top of those towers on youtube as an example. Imagine standing on a ledge 2 meters high vs a tower. It's purely psychological and the danger/fear is what creates the rush.
The person watching also gets a similar feeling seeing it live.
The adrenaline is certainly there with danger, I'm just not sure that part really equals 'enjoyment' in my opinion. You also get a huge adrenaline shot from waking up on the 40th floor of a high-rise and seeing fire trucks clustering outside while the alarm blares away (personal experience, unfortunately!) and that's not something I'd say was enjoyable at all.

I guess it really comes down to personality, and I'm not the daredevil personality type. Most F1 drivers (and successful racing drivers at any high level) probably are, so for them it might equal increased enjoyment. It doesn't for me as a spectator; I don't like to watch potentially fatal events live, and while I do find videos such as the extreme climbing ones you mention quite gripping and exciting, I'm sure I wouldn't want to watch one where the climbers actually died.

Basically, my somewhat long-winded point is that for me, excitement does not necessarily equal enjoyment. I can't deny that danger leads to an increase in pure excitement, but it's not the sort of excitement I want in my sports. That there are repercussions for a mistake is vital to motorsport, but I want them to be sporting repercussions only, not potentially the loss of a life. I have only seen one fatal accident during the time I've been actively watching F1, and the reminder that modern F1 cars can still be fatal did nothing to increase my enjoyment of the sport. I firmly hope Bianchi's crash was the last fatal F1 incident I ever see.
Yeah, it really does come down to personality. The situation you found yourself in does create feelings through the same mechanisms as what we are talking about. I'm not an expert on how these things work but I have experienced both panic attacks and these enjoyable rushes from driving fast for example, and the feeling is similar in terms of symptoms, such as increased heart rate among other things.

The big thing here is control, I think. The negative feelings like panic attacks/anxiety come when you feel you are not in control. For example, If I am driving a car fast and am confident in my ability, I will feel more of the enjoyable feelings. But if I'm the passenger sitting next to someone doing the same thing, I will be terrified, which has happened to me.

I actually used to like trying dangerous things when I was younger. Now, I have gone completely the other way though, being super cautios about everything, not even daring to go on a rollercoaster, even prone to anxiety and panic attacks. I find myself thinking sometimes, how stupid I was doing these things. But the thing is though, I still enjoy watching other people doing dangerous sports while I'm the complete opposite from them.

I don't think anybody would enjoy seeing someone die or get injured(unless they're twisted in some way) but the possibility of it happening is what makes it exciting, and obviously not everyone enjoys it.
Ethically you should always strive to make sports like this safer but I just know I will enjoy it less with more and more safety features are applied. This is just how some are wired to feel.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by paulsf1fix »

I've been watching F1 since 1996, I used to watch the odd race here and there but 1996 was the first year I sat down to watch every race. Not interested in F1 from the 60's-70's but the cars looked good.

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Re: Do you think you would've been an F1 fan in the old days

Post by Tassadar »

Probably not, simply because, it was never on tv and no internet to keep track of it. You needed to be very dedicated to follow the sport. And in Canada, was probably not possible.

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