I’m sure we’ve all been caught in the moment at some point in our lives and acted without considering the possible consequences. Still, I’d like to think that even the most impulsive of us – as we find ourselves clambering over a 10-foot fence and checking to see how close the cars travelling at upwards of 150 miles per hour are – wouldn’t risk running across a stretch of race track during a Formula One practice race like this man in China did earlier today.
In case you hadn’t heard, F1 racing has come to Japan this weekend, and people are excited! Couple the race with a three-day weekend, and you can believe that a ton of people are heading out to Mie Prefecture to catch the big event. Though not quite as popular as soccer or baseball, it’s impossible to deny the draw the motorsport has in the country.
It also means all of the non-Japanese drivers are checking out some of the local culture. Like Red Bull Racing team driver Sebastian Vettel, who made a stop in Tokyo that has become a big hit online thanks to a video showing the German checking out a Japanese game arcade and trying his hand(s) at arcade Mario Kart!
Now, the million dollar question is: Do his real-world driving skills translate to a big win in the game world??
“Forget the Grand Prix, the real race for the drivers is the flight from Korea to Tokyo tonight on various private jets.” A statement tweeted by F1 writer Adam Cooper on 6 October when the Korean Grand Prix was held.
Sure enough, only a few hours after the race had finished, Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso tweeted, “Already in Japan! One of the best GP’s of the year!” This is a move that the Japanese media had taken as a source of pride as well as yet another sign that trouble looms for the beleaguered Korean Grand Prix.
Some of our readers may be too young to remember, but in his heyday, Ayrton Senna was the biggest thing in racing. The Brazilian racer took home the F1 driver’s championship in 1988, 1990, and 1991 before his life was cut short when his car collided with a retaining wall at over 230 kilometers (143) miles per hour during the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix.
Japanese motorsport fans have a particular fondness for Senna. Aside from having some of his most memorable races at Japan’s Suzuka Circuit, Senna won all three of his championships in cars powered by Honda engines, and was also involved in the production of the company’s flagship NSX sports car.
Using telemetric data Honda has recreated Senna’s record-breaking 1989 lap of Suzuka in light and sound as part of an incredible video posted on the company’s website.
Japanese site Livedoor News gave us a chuckle earlier this week when they presented a short article detailing how regular, everyday folk like you and me (when I’m not dining on roasted swan with the queen, that is) can take a ride in a Formula One racing car and experience every skeleton-crushing g-force and stomach-wrenching twist and turn for real.
In a video taken at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dabi, United Arab Emirates, we see the unfortunate passenger in the rear of a specially adapted 1999 model Tyrrell F1 car thrown about as the professional driver tears around the track, almost as if he’s trying his hardest to get his passenger to throw up a lung.
All we can say is: thank goodness she’s wearing a helmet.