Off track activities for Jordan

The Jordan drivers carry out off track engagements in Melbourne Giorgio Pantano's first media duty at a grand prix brought out the animal in him, when he visited Melbourne Zoo on Monday. It was an all-Italian affair as the Jordan rookie teamed...

The Jordan drivers carry out off track engagements in Melbourne

Giorgio Pantano's first media duty at a grand prix brought out the animal in him, when he visited Melbourne Zoo on Monday. It was an all-Italian affair as the Jordan rookie teamed up with Minardi new-boy, Gianmaria Bruni for a photocall. Stroking Koala Bears and feeding Kangaroos was the order of the day, as Pantano adapted to the sometimes strange demands made on a Formula 1 driver's time.

Nick Heidfeld with Giorgio Pantano and members of the Melbourne Giants basketball team.
Photo by Jordan Grand Prix.
Appointment number two for Pantano involved teaming up with Nick Heidfeld for a spot of basketball. The two Jordan men were the guests of top local team, the Melbourne Liberty Giants and indulged in a spot of hoop play. It was not exactly an even contest as the two appropriately named Giants were 7 foot and 6 foot nine tall respectively, giving them a slight advantage over the two Jordan boys who both stand up at 5 foot 5.

Nick actually turned out to be something of a natural at the game, admitting that he actually likes it and has played in the past. He caught out the opposition a few times by scuttling between their legs, but he didn't turn down the offer of help when one of the Giants lifted him off the ground to improve his slam dunking technique. They also brought out a ladder to make life easier for Giorgio.

Third driver Timo Glock joined the two race drivers for a pre-GP beach trip when they visited the global headquarters of new team partner, Quiksilver. Located in Torquay, about a hundred kilometers south of Melbourne, the company is based at the start of on the scenic Great Ocean Road, near Bells Beach, the birthplace of surfing back in the Fifties.

All three drivers were given some rudimentary instruction from an archetypal surfing dude, before paddling out to catch a few waves. Not surprisingly, considering their talent at the wheel, they all proved to have a great sense of balance. "I really enjoyed myself," said Heidfeld. "It was my first time surfing, but it definitely won't be my last." He obviously meant it, as he "accidently" forgot to give his wetsuit back at the end of the day!

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Nick Heidfeld , Gianmaria Bruni , Giorgio Pantano , Timo Glock
Teams Minardi , Jordan