Thursday, 8 April 2010

An evening with Joe Saward



On the Monday after the Grand Prix I went to An Evening with Joe, hosted by the F1 journalist Joe Saward. I discovered Joe around a year ago through listening to the podcasts produced by Sidepodcast.

I wasn't quite sure what to expect from the evening and who else would turn up. My first decision was whether or not to wear my new Williams shirt. I decided that I would wear the shirt and turned out to be the only person at the event sporting team colours! I was also a little surprised that the audience turned out to be full of middle aged white males, I was expecting a bit more diversity of ages, sexes and nationalities.

I like Joe's writing and podcasts because he isn't afraid of giving an opinion. Frequently veers off the point, but is nearly always interesting. I was expecting the evening to begin with a speech on the weekend's race, but after a five minute introduction it was straight into questions from the audience.

Unbelievably the evening went for over four hours, taking out the breaks and late start there must have been nearly three hours of Q&A. It was really interesting to hear an insider of the F1 circus speaking his mind. You know when they recount a story of Frank Wiliams phoning them up for driver advice you must be speaking with someone genuinely knowledgeable.

There were a few top three / five type questions.
Joe's top five drivers: Hamilton, Kubica, Alonso, Massa & Liuzzi
Top three circuits: Spa, Monza and either Monaco or Suzaka (it depends if you want a great event or race track).

I was sitting at the same table as two girls who are part of the event / media management team at the Grand Prix. At one point the conversation got onto the best looking drivers and Joe mentioned Christien Klien looking in the direction of our table. There was much blushing and I suspect we never got to the true story there!

I finally put my hand up to ask a question on behalf of Clint and Joe came straight to me, remarking on my wonderful team shirt and stating his admiration of Williams as the only proper team left!
Richard: With the end of V10 engines, have we lost the sound of F1?
Joe: Sounds is an irrelevance.
I knew Clint would be crushed when I told him.........

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