I attend my first Grand Prix as Hamilton wins record breaking 6th home triumph: 2019 British Grand Prix Review

The British Grand Prix at Silverstone this year was a special one. It was my first time ever attending a Grand Prix and I thoroughly enjoyed every moment. It surprised me though, just how much of a party/carnival atmosphere it was there but with an estimated attendance of 345,000 through the weekend, it shows just why the British Grand Prix is such an important part of F1 but also the British sporting calendar. I will put an additional post up about that but I will use this post to talk about the action on the circuit.

Coming off the back of an exciting Austrian Grand Prix, practice in Silverstone left people guessing who would be the team to beat with a red Bull, Mercedes and Ferrari topping a session each. Interestingly though, Mercedes had a 1-2 in second practice while the Scuderia had a 1-2 in final practice meaning Qualifying was poised to be intense. It was but right at the front as only 0.006s separated Valtteri Bottas as he denied home favourite Lewis Hamilton pole position. That was the shortest margin for pole in 9 years. read more

A Tory Said what? June 2019

I am back with a new instalment of Tory bashing and with a new title, ‘A Tory Said What’ after a good few months away from doing this. It was a title I was going to use for the February and March posts before I missed them and this dragged on into April and May. That means I missed some mighty clangers from Conservative politicians. What did I miss?

I missed Jacob Rees Mogg seemingly defending the use of Concentration Camps during the Second Boer War; the Prime Minister telling children to go back to school as they went on strike over climate change as well as Jeremy Hunt forgetting his history in Slovakia. That was just February. March saw more embarrassment for the government as Theresa May offered herself up as the sacrificial lamb only for enough of her MPs to vote down the Withdrawl Agreement again in Meaningful Vote Three. Then, in came the vultures prying around her job which continued through April and have not yet stopped as she eventually announced her resignation at the end of May. read more

Newcastle United: Rafa’s departure and my disillusionment.

Since the news broke that Rafa Benitez would not be staying at Newcastle United beyond the length of his three-year deal this summer, a few people have been asking for my thoughts through a blog post. In completely unrelated and personal ways, the past couple of months have been challenging for me and that in a way has delayed this post. However, a few weeks after his departure and the announcement of Steve Bruce as the successor by which time this had been drafted, I will provide some thoughts…

It was the moment a lot of Newcastle United fans were dreading and it came in the form of a short statement from the club. The statement said, ‘It is with disappointment that we announce manager Rafael Benítez will leave Newcastle United upon the expiry of his contract on 30th June 2019. We have worked hard to extend Rafa’s contract over a significant period of time, however, it has not been – and will not be – possible to reach an agreement with Rafa and his representatives…We would like to thank Rafa and his coaching team for their efforts over the last three years and their significant contribution to what has been collectively achieved.’ That was it. The best manager Newcastle United have had since the Sir Bobby Robson days was leaving.

The inquest is still ongoing in some areas of the press and has prompted much debate. Meanwhile, the supporters have reacted as you may well expect. The inquest I refer to relates around how Newcastle United got into the situation of being 28 days away from the start of the next Premier League season with no manager having apparently been caught unawares. As for the supports, it was another episode under the ownership of Mike Ashley that has polarised the relationship between the clans with a substantial part of its fanbase. For some, it is the final straw. read more