• Maurice Hamilton's F1 blog

Old Mo's Almanac 2014

Maurice Hamilton January 3, 2014
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Eddie Jordan finally reaches the end of a comment for BBC TV at Interlagos. The answer is completely unrelated to the question.

Anxious to make up F1 grid numbers, FIA accepts entry from 'Team LendUsAQuid' operating from an aircraft hanger in Northamptonshire and, unbeknown to the FIA, run by disaffected former F1 personnel keen to show up the banal sound-bite culture of F1.

FlushCo, a division of CVC TightArse Venture Partners, starts Pay Day Loan business for F1 teams with cashflood problems and drivers who have not been paid.

Kimi Räikkonen requests 69 as his competition number. Easy to remember, he says, because of association with VAT 69 and occasionally not knowing whether he's on his head or his heels.

SkyF1 signs Allan McNish, Dario Franchitti, Mark Blundell, David Coulthard, Derek Warwick and John Watson to join Martin Brundle, Johnny Herbert, Damon Hill and Anthony Davidson.

The Office of Fair Trading investigates immediate complaints that FlushCo interest rate is 7546% for first 10 minutes, escalating by 95% for each subsequent 10-minute period.


SkyF1 also sign Tony Brooks, Alan Jones, Emerson Fittipaldi, Jean Alesi, Maria Teresa de Filippis, Nino Vaccarella and Noberto Fontana.

Team LendUsAQuid sign Chinese industrialist's son, Sum Ting Wong. Spokesman says: "He's bloody slow but we don't care what Lotus say; the financial package has never been more relevant."

Bernie Ecclestone, CEO of FlushCo, is charged with applying excessive interest rates on loans to beleaguered F1 teams. "We're trying to stop them going to the tax people with stories about me claiming Tesco Clubcard points for private jet fuel." says Mr. E. "It's not true. It's Nectar points. We do what we can."

Team LendUsAQuid's first simulator run with 2014 car comes to a sudden halt. Spokesman says: "The electricity was cut off due to unpaid bill".

With the utmost respect to the late Nelson Mandela, Mercedes turn down Lewis Hamilton's request for 46664 as competition number due to 'space and commercial reasons'.

Team LendUsAQuid spokesman says launch of their car, the 'Sweet FA 01', in Banbury Livestock Market is entirely appropriate because it's a turkey if ever he saw one.

SkyF1 further strengthen TV presenters with Desire Wilson, Giovanni Lavaggi, Tarso Marques, Huub Rothengatter, Scott Speed and Eddie 'The Eagle' Edwards.

Bernie Ecclestone arrives outside Royal Courts of Justice.


Bernie Ecclestone finally finds his way through revolving entrance door at Royal Courts of Justice.

In on-going News of the World (NoW) phone-hacking enquiry, a journalist admits hacking Paul di Resta's phone but adds nothing interesting was said.

Bernie Ecclestone plans introduction of revolving doors to F1 paddocks to make admission even more difficult.

On-air introduction of driver pundits in Melbourne takes so long, SkyF1 misses start of Australian Grand Prix.

Pay Day Loans enquiry reveals FlushCo was owned by Mrs. Ecclestone, 78 per cent of which was sold to MakingAMintCo, who moved it on with a 385% mark-up to RakingItInCo, which is jointly owned in trust by MeanAsMustardCo and ShortArmsDeepPocketsCo, all of whom took a loss and gave it to Mr. Ecclestone, along with a cheque for £3.5m. "I had to help them out," said Mr. E. "We do what we can."


Max Chilton only finisher in Bahrain. Not running fast enough to overheat or drain fuel tank.

Williams representative quoted as saying: "We're thrilled with Mercedes". Turns out he was talking about comparison between spanking new AMG E63 staff car and out-going knackered Renault Clio.

Disney offer Bernie Ecclestone the role as Charlie Chaplin in remake of 'The Great Dictator'. "Brilliant audition in that revolving door," says Disney talent scout.

NoW trial reveals hacking of Kimi Räikkonen's phone but nothing comprehensible was heard.

Team LendusAQuid announce Chinese sponsor, Ho Lee Fock. "Frankly, it's a massive scam," says team spokesperson. "He won't get into the paddock and he hasn't seen the price of Paddock Club tickets yet."

Bernie Ecclestone forms 'Revolver Small Arms Support Group' to help little pensioners permanently stuck in revolving doors.

Introduction of SkyF1 pundits takes so long in China there is no time to interview Christian Horner.

© Sutton Images


Bernie Ecclestone found guilty of Pay Day Loans scandal; sent down for six months.

NoW trial reveals they hacked Sir Jackie Stewart's phone until he attempted to transfer the charges.

Eddie Jordan and Suzi Perry walk the Barcelona paddock six times unable to speak to anyone as F1 personnel become trapped behind SkyF1 flash mob driver pundits.

One driver overtakes another in Spanish Grand Prix. The race is stopped to allow cheerleaders onto the grid, fireworks, organ music and 'PASS!' to flash repeatedly on giant TV screens.

Bernie Ecclestone establishes company to manufacture revolving doors for home use to keep people out. 'Revolver Small Arms Co for Home Protection' is inundated with enquires from Idaho, Texas, Montana and The White House about whether or not the bullets are armour-piercing.


Bernie Ecclestone brokers deal with Government to sell prison service to CVC Capital Crime Partners.

NoW trial reveals hacking of Eddie Jordan's phone but battery of recording device ran out in largely one-sided conversation lasting five hours.

Sebastian Vettel gets extra five points for wearing the biggest watch on the podium in Canada.

Bernie Ecclestone arranges for revolving doors to be put on grid in Austria. Pastor Maldonado can't find his way back in after a last-minute comfort break and blames Williams.

Celebrity MasterChef lays down a tough challenge as F1 chefs are asked to do what they can with a gas hob, primus stove and a mere $10,000 budget for compulsory purchase of ingredients through FlushCo F1Foods Ltd.

FIA bans pre-laughing devices. Daniel Ricciardo receives five-place penalty for smiling too much.


NoW trial reveals they hacked Bernie Ecclestone's phone but backed off when he sent them a £3.2m bill for broadcasting rights.

BBC's Wimbledon coverage announces Lewis Hamilton on pole at Silverstone. BBC apologises if this affected some viewers' enjoyment of qualifying highlights to be broadcast for the first time the following Wednesday.

Silverstone becomes a night race. No one in the windowless media centre notices.

Ever conscious of motor sport's image and the environment, Max Mosley arrives on a pushbike at Hockenheim but denies calling security official at paddock revolving door "an arrogant German pleb". Mr. Mosley cleared of all charges when judge takes into account his late father's sympathies and Mr. Mosley's eloquent explanation that this is, in fact, a pleasant form of exhortation in Germany.

Bernie Ecclestone negotiates for all prisoners to have month of August off.

TV commentators form 500-metre queue at front of grid in Hungary to make appointments to interview drivers. Martin Brundle pushes his way to the front of the queue.


NoW trial reveals they thought Sir Jackie Stewart was onto them and creating a wind-up when they heard him ordering tartan trousers from his tailor.

Lewis Hamilton fined for persistent parking in McLaren pit box.

Daniel Ricciardo receives 10-place grid penalty at Monza for continuing to appear far too happy.

F1 Secret Squirrel Strategy Group launches investigation into rumour that a spectator in Austin 2013 may have glimpsed a F1 driver through the paddock fence.

Mercedes hold secret tyre test in Barcelona with Hamilton and Rosberg sporting false beards and pit crew wearing dresses and make-up.

Double points to be awarded to the driver sucking the longest on tube of his energy drink bottle and not speaking to commentator during parade laps.

© Getty Images


NoW trial sees admission of confusion when Kimi Räikkonen called them and asked what he had been saying because he couldn't remember.

Infinity Racing Partners director asked to represent F1 on 'Strictly Come Dancing' after displaying endurance and fancy footwork during two years of Lotus negotiations.

Team LendUsAQuid signs Kimi Räikkonen because "He likes the fact we don't know what to tell him to do. And, to be honest, we might get away with not paying him".

Eddie Jordan takes a selfie and can't understand why his mouth is blurred.

F1 Secret Squirrel Strategy Group declares F1 seems perfect and agrees to ease traffic problems by reducing admission numbers of irritating spectators.


Double points for driver making the fastest comfort break to and from his car on starting grid. Mercedes cause uproar by bringing portable loo to grid in Japan.

Bernie Ecclestone makes profit for prisons for the first time and takes 97% commission. "We do what we can," says Mr. E.

Ferrari win the double point comfort break at Suzuka when Kimi Räikkonen takes a leak against the pit wall.

SkyF1 celebrates one millionth showing of Nigel Mansell F1 Legends interview.

Martin Brundle can't get through grid in Sochi for TV presenters and cameramen interviewing drivers' agents, C-list pop stars and Russian secret service personnel.

Bernie Ecclestone asks Lewis Hamilton to officially open F1 kennels in paddock.


An astonishing 0.124-second stop by Red Bull to change four tyres in Japan leads to FIA enquiry. Mechanics found guilty of taking banned substance 'LAPPED' (Lance Armstrong Power Performance Enhancing Drugs). Red Bull fined $1m.

Free Practice 1 in Brazil delayed when paddock revolving door becomes jammed with SkyF1 presenters, many of whom don't know whether they're coming or going.

FlushCo F1Foods admits to using horsemeat in burgers served in Paddock Club at Silverstone. Mr. Ecclestone's defence the meat is of the highest quality "because it's from the stolen Derby winner Shergar" is not accepted. "We do what we can," says Mr. E.

Double points to be awarded for driver with the smartest energy drink bottle.

Police in Abu Dhabi called to intervene in paddock punch-up between SkyF1 pundits over the six microphones.

Bernie Ecclestone manages to ban visitors with a record of not parking neatly in prison car park.


Red Bull spokesperson says the $1m fine was one of those things but they're pissed off because pit stop was so fast that no one except SkyF1's Ted Kravitz saw it and Eddie Jordan has only just found out it happened.

Max Chilton crowned world champion after being the only driver to complete every lap during 2014.

In a surprise move, Coke sponsors TeamLendUsAQuid. Nigella Lawson immediately offers to be team celebrity chef.

Pirelli agree to sponsor poop scoopers in F1 paddocks in 2015 because they're used to shovelling s**t.

Mark Webber's marketing department introduces 'Multi 21', a range of pest control products. Instructions in German.

Team LendUsAQuid's Sum Ting Wong finally finishes the Brazilian Grand Prix. "His lap times were total rubbish but the cheques arrived on time," says PR spokesperson. "It's been an exhausting year going absolutely nowhere and being asked to pretend we were. We haven't a hope in Hell for 2015 so we're off to the Caribbean for a few weeks to get away from those guys at SkyF1. Happy New Year!"

Maurice Hamilton writes for ESPN F1.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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A veteran journalist in the paddock, Maurice Hamilton has been part of the Formula One scene since 1977 and was the Observer's motor racing correspondent for 20 years. He has written several books as well as commentating on Formula One for BBC Radio 5 Live
Maurice Hamilton Close
Maurice Hamilton writes for ESPN F1. A veteran journalist in the paddock, Maurice Hamilton has been part of the Formula One scene since 1977 and was the Observer's motor racing correspondent for 20 years. He has written several books as well as commentating on Formula One for BBC Radio 5 Live