As the weekend begins to wrap up, I like to take a broad look at the major events of the weekend, specifically in the ranks of Formula One, IndyCar, NASCAR...and whatever series I was able to catch.
This weekend was my 'home' grand prix in Montreal. I am in Western Canada, and despite our opinions of our eastern friends and politics, they have the most beautiful city, and incredible track in much of Motorsports.
The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, on the Isle Notrè Dame, is absolutely stunning. It's one of the toughest races on brakes and engines that Formula One will have to tackle each year. Lastly, it creates incredible racing because of its layout, and the outrageous weather that presents itself during the Canadian GP weekend.
Many thought the race was over, but shortly after the end there was a tragedy in turn 2. A track worker was run over by the crane that was removing Esteban Gutierrez's car. The news was grim from the get go.
In speaking with friends about the situation, it is truly a loss for motor sport as a whole. Corner workers, marshals, series officials, crane operators, any off track employee, or volunteer are the most valuable people in our sport. Without them, local tracks would not hold the racing that allows folks to get hooked on racing, and we would not have the talents that we watch week in and week out on some of the best circuits world wide.
I feel for the family of the decease, the crew who he worked with, and the driver who mistakenly ran him over.
But, now is where I might just put my foot in my mouth, due to how short of a time since the accident, but the FIA certainly needs to look over its safety procedures. In talking to Nancy Knapp-Schilke, with Motorsport.com, who happens to be a former corner worker/marshal, and she mentioned that it is not unusual for track clean-up to start after the checkered flag but normally no one goes trackside until permission is given by race control and after the final car has cleared the track. Thus if anyone had been trackside, it no doubt was approved. However this does not explain why the tragedy happened at all but that is for the FIA and the Canadian officials to clarify. The most likely questions would be: why did the worker would lean over to pick up what he dropped knowing the crane was moving or why was there not a spotter in the area for the crane operator.
With that said, and with Felipe Massa's comments about his experiences in having to climb despite having injuries from Monaco, beckon the need for some improvements to training and facilitating trackside safety.
That's all I want to say about it. I think he is talented, and a good guy to have in the sport...but there are some neat challenges he can take on in America...go IndyCar racing already, thats where all the washed up Formula One drivers go when they lose their edge right?
Spiderman Wins Another One
As for storylines with the IndyCar races, there wasn't too much to write home about. A good safe race, with some great battles. Who can ask for anything else?
I must say that seeing a team member losing his glove on the front wing of Ed Carpenters car, causing him to come back in and lose a ton of track position was the funniest thing I have seen in a while.
Johnson wins in Pocono
Jimmie Johnson won another race? Oh boy. I am...so...excited...yaaaaawn.
I look forward to the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb...it's another great month for motorsports.