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Thought provoking tv show at the start of the F1 season


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I really didn't want to see the Roger Williamson crash again. I've seen it once in my life and that was more than enough.

Both Purley and Hailwood got the same medals for try to extricate drivers from burning cars.

Pity Tom Wheatcroft wasn't around to explain what happened when they brought Roger's car back to the paddock :shock:

Really can't understand how it went on for so long.

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Excellent program. It will re-educate those who say "today's F1 drivers operate in a safety bubble" when they see how horific things were in the past.

In theory there is no difference between theory and practice.<br />

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In practice, there is!

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Just realised I watched it on my phone. here is the link to the PC version! a bigger screen PC link to the same show!

.

Somehow I feel like I'm in China with selective internet censorship. (It's just the latest program "not available in your area" All I can think is maybe BBC America doesn't want to give away something now it can later air in the US.) I guess I really don't want to see the gruesome details part anyway.

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iPlayer is publicly funded so is UK only. If it were served to the world, our licence fee which we have to pay to cover the BBC's HUGE costs would get wasted on bandwidth to those who aren't paying and the Director General might have to take a cut in his multi-million pound payment package.

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Makes me wonder if you guys can freely access our PBS & NPR streams. I do actually hope so- they're one small bit of Yank media of which we can be proud.

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Finally got around to wartching this last night, tbh the 60's 70's are my favourite years of GP so its nothing I've not seen before but a great program never the less.

Bit harsh on Chapman I feel, they sort of singled out Lotus for a drumming - it's true a lot of guys didn't want to race his cars BUT in order to keep up with the likes of Lotus the other manufacturers had to follow suit.

For drivers like Jochen Rindt the attraction was to race the best car on the circuit which esp in the case of the 72 was the reason why he won the wold championship (albeit and sadly postumously).

Very interesting listening to Jackie Stewart and the way the GP circuits took safety as a 4 letter word, many a driver / spectator owe a lot to him and his push to make motorsport safer.

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As I recall, the reason Rindt died is that he refused to use the harness crutch strap on the grounds that he was "too well-endowed"...then in the crash he "submarined" in the harness and did terminal damage to his neck. The only posthumous world champion; and I trust we never have another. I look back on the days of the aluminium cars with no aerodynamic assistance as a golden age....the car design made a difference, but driver skill seemed to have more effect, and the cars themselves seemed more accessible to the rest of us....you felt that you could hop in and drive them yourself, whereas these days (witness Richard Hammond's effort) it's just impossible.

Edited by molemot

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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As with most of the incidents there were additional influences on the reason why driver's died. I'd never seen Jackie Stewart give such in depth information - I knew about his role and the fact GP was a very dangerous sport and the fact he carried his own tools in the car, but the comedy (bad choice of word) of errors was amazing. The fact marshalls for example didnt have fire retardent clothing, the circuit safety approach was shocking. Rindt also managed to smack into a loose barrier which didnt help.

But deaths like Ronnie Peterson's (late 70's) was totally preventable - it's just amazing to think in the world of the safety concious how different it all was, what 40 years ago.

Interesting to hear Jochen's widow as well - there is no doubt where her blame lies.

Its just really sad listening to these really brave men. OK no one held a gun to their heads to do it, but the conflict of interest between doing what they loved and gambling it against their lives and their friends lives, is quite moving.

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00z8v18/Grand_Prix_The_Killer_Years/

Marvellous documentary. Only just watched as being just a casual F1 watcher I did not pick up on the thread title. For anyone else who may be equally detached, it is not a "glorifying history" of F1, but a searching story of the reality that lay behind those years. Lots of Lotus and Chapman content.

Iplayer, and available only until this evening.

Edited by mdavies
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Downloading it now from another source, it should be done in 40 mins :pirate:

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I think there may be copyright reasons why the BBC iplayer can't be watched outside the UK.

Chose to not watch this programme after reading several reviews of it on the internet. I didn't want to watch Bandini sat in his burning car or Roger WIlliamson or Tom Pryce's decapitated body drive his car down the Kyalami straight.

I read that it referred to Jim Clark hittng a tree 15 feet off the ground. First time I've heard about that. I don't what the programme said but there was no way that Chapman's design was responsible for that accident as he found out by having the car forensicly tested afterwards. If he had fund he was responsible in any way, from what I have read, he would have finished with racing there and then. In fact, he very nearly did anyway.

In my mind, Sir Jackie is the greatest F1 driver of all time, not just for his superb driving and being the first "modern" professional driver but his success in making cars and circuits safer. I remember people's attitudes at the time and he was not at all popular but he was right. Thankfully, he was also persistent and persuasive. Unfortunately, the rarity of fatal or injurious accidents led to a lowering of standards with drivers closing the door too late and colliding with the attempted overtaker and Schumacher's move on Barrichello in the last Hungarian GP and Senna's on Prost's Ferrari in Japan. Happily, drivers seemed to have calmed down in the last year or two so there have been fewer unnecessary collisions and better racing as a result.

THe honourable Moley was right about Rindt's accident and poor drilling of the brake shafts led to its failure (in those days quality control was not as good as now). Ronnie Peterson's death was, I read, put down to him having to drive the more dangerous, older car but that completely ignores the fact that the Lotus 79 introduced, with special dispensation from the rule enforcers, the central fuel cell which was way safer than the fuel system of any other car on the grid. Also, when carbonfibre chassis were being investigated, Lotus took more effort than most to investigate the way it would stand up to a crash and included Kevlar into the weave to make it more resistant to disintegration. Doesn't sound dangerous to me.

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TBH I looked away when those clips were shown, if you've seen them before you get plenty of warning - once is enough for me as well.

Personally I think its important to know what happened though, even in the full frontal horror or it all.

I liken it to telling people about the Bradford football stadium - you tell someone about it, people just go "really ? thats bad..."

You SHOW them, people start buying fire alarms and so on and taking it a lot more seriously

It's worth watching - esp if you like Sir Jackie, oh and if you've not seen this, its also well worth watching too (before it gets removed !) :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tnHksZ5F-54

I agree, about Jackie Stewart being the most complete racing driver on and off the track - but thats why I love that era, the guys today are simply standing on the shoulders of giants that have gone before them.

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The finest Jackie Stewart film is, I believe,"Weekend of a Champion" made by Roman Polanski...in which he shadows Stewart through the Monaco Grand Prix in 1971, if I remember correctly. I don't think it's legitimately available at the moment...although it was, back in the 90's....but there's bound to be some streaming download or bootleg dvd out there somewhere. It's well worth a viewing, if you haven't seen it....I recorded it off the TV years ago; must see if I still have it!

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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.I liken it to telling people about the Bradford football stadium - you tell someone about it, people just go "really ? thats bad..."You SHOW them, people start buying fire alarms and so on and taking it a lot more seriously

The Bradford fire footage has been heavily censored by Yorkshire TV over the years, strictly enforced too which is why you won't find it on youtube or anything. I last saw it on wikileaks a couple of years ago before they became front page news.

They only allow the footage to be used for the purposes of fire training to show how quickly things can spread,

Its odd though that it is quite acceptable for the footage of a driver trapped in his car choking to death or a burnt corpse being dragged out of a car to be shown in this programme. There was little respect shown at the actual time of these events to them so maybe thats reflected in its showing?

Edited by Nelly9000
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