BMW teams up with Italian styling gurus at Pininfarina for slick new coupe
F1 sets the capital alight
The Formula 1 circus arrives in central London.
F1's David Coulthard roars through the chicane into Piccadilly Circus in his McLaren Mercedes
London’s streets last night reverberated to a different kind of traffic noise as F1 stars past and present drove current F1 cars up Regent Street in a precursor to this weekend’s British Grand Prix at Silverstone. An estimated 500,000 people lined the short route to see the cars in action, with stewards describing the masses as a “wall of people.”
As spectators jostled for position to see the multi-million pound 900bhp racers pass by, street furniture, roofs and shop windows were all utilised as vantage points for the spectacle. However, the shear number of people caused the police to delay to the start to ensure safety. Despite this the event was a huge success, and could prove to be a precursor to a future London Grand Prix.
GP for London?
Juan Pablo Montoya hurtles down Regent Street in front of dense crowds
It’s an idea that had support among the spectators, F1 teams, drivers and even London’s Mayor Ken Livingstone. The normally anti-car stance of the Mayor was set aside as the opportunity to earn London some money and prove the capital’s ability to organise and host large events was demonstrated.
The drivers, who included Nigel Mansell, Jenson Button, David Coulthard and Juan Pablo Montoya were all keen to put on a show. Burning rubber and doughnuts were the order of the day as the city experienced the incredible wail of highly tuned racing engines. Button described the event as “really special,” and Mansell, happy to get behind the wheel of the Jordan after a seven year absence from F1, suggested that a London Grand Prix would “be one of the best street circuits in the world.”
F1’s power brokers are said to be keen on a London Grand Prix. FI chief Bernie Ecclestone has been approached and team owners like Frank Williams and drivers Button and Montoya have expressed their support for such an event. As last night demonstrated it would need to be organised carefully, but London’s public transport links would make such a race feasible.
With London’s world famous backdrops a London GP would unquestionably be a fantastic spectacle, and one that currently looks more promising after the success of last night’s hastily organised parade.
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