Wednesday, May 31, 2006

The sprint from iimb to sjr-ipark: On a lap with me

The sprint from iimb to sjr i-park starts predictably from iimb. To be more specific it starts in the dark and musty underground garage of the college. The dark corridor opens into sunlight with a steep 50 degree slant rising upwards to the road. The intial half a kilometer is a curvy and speedbraker ridden path that beautifully cuts through the dense iimb foliage until you reach the front gate. Here one would have to virtually take a 90 degree turn to the left at the gates and will invariably require the drivers to come to a near complete halt as the gaurd opened the gates. One could reach a maximum of around 50 - 60 kms per hour in this stretch. From here on the race is on.

Imeediately outside the gates you hit the main road perpendicularly. Braking hard and quickly accelerating from the line are essential as you find a gap in the traffic and hit the main road. The track is bumpy and pot holed and curves gently to the left. The more important aspect is the traffic that does not let you speed at more than 50 kmph. The stretch from this area to the silk board crossing is a maze and drivers could take multiple routes of varying traffic and road quality to reach the spot. The average speed can rarely increase beyond 50kmph during this period with several very low speed stretches interspersed with bursts of high speed and hard braking.

The infamous silk board crossing requires almost every driver to stop for the signal before merging with the flow into the 'outer ring road'. From here on drivers push the pedal. The flowing traffic means that the initial spurt of acceleration is gradual and soon you are doing 80kmph on the gently turning but wide ring road. The first speedbreaker forces the drivers to hit the brake hard and take it at an uncomfortable 3rd gear before quickly pushing the gas again. This is a spot where overtaking is possible. A burst of acceleration and you encounter another speed breaker and then another. These short bursts require the driver to be extremely alert as there as brakes are hit at high speeds and acceleration is immediate. The ring road continues until it takes a strong 40 degree turn to the left. From here on the road becomes wider and offers the maximum chance for high speeds in the entire sprint. The maximum speeds in this circuit are reached here and you can do upto 100kmph and once again drivers have to be extremely careful about the speed brakers. This stright is long continues until marathahalli where drivers take a slide to the left into the twisty upward inclining road the skirts the highway. There is an invariable stop. Once up the incline which is usually done in the second gear due to the extremely high traffic you have to take a curvy 60 degree right turn and continue this slow pace until the end of the irritating marathahalli bridge. The heavy traffic, narrow track and drivers desperate to overtake make this the most challenging part of the sprint and tests the drivers skills to the maximum. Once past the bridge you can push on the accelaratpor to about 50 kmph until the 90 degree left and then accelerate upto 60 kmph. This twisty high speed, traffic filled portion of the circuit is where most accidents could happen and hence require utmost attention. You finally hit a 90 degree right leading to IT parks and this section of the track is good enough to hit speeds though for a short period until the final turn of the sprint a sharp left that leads straight to the saibaba hospital and SJR i-park.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Chennai bombay and 7-up

This has been sort of an ugly weekend in f1 terms with schumi getting discgraced and all. The race eventually wasnt a very predictable one except for alonso's victory. Webbo drove an awesome race and so did kimi. Ideally these 2 guys should have ended up on the podium. Well, thats huv f1 is. Coulthard will be ecstasic to grab his first podium with red bull. He indeed was the superman this weekend. Moving away from f1, it had been a pretty quiet weekend for me after a hectic last week. Last weekend i was in chennai basking in the sweltering heat. It was nostalgic to catch up with the city and my friends although it is just an year since i left the place. A couple of days later i was in bombay peacefully confining myself in the air conditioned depths of my room in hll's training center. The IT interns had no other job than eat, watch movies and have unlimited free ice creams until evening. HLL took us for bowling in the evening at phoenix with drinks, disc and food. 'twas fun.

My internship seems to be screeching to a halt slowly. We have our final presentations this friday and then its freedom i think. Well, i'm longing for some free time before the unforgiving grind of term 4. I've decided that i'm gonna fight this term. Well, thats what i say before every term. Two months of ineternship and i'm already missing iimb so much. Dunno huv difficult it will be after i pass out.

Meanwhile my new after work entertainment has been cards nowadays and its mega fun. Learnt a new game called 7-up yest and its real fun. I have a suspicion that the presi invented the game himself. May be will make an exclusive post on the rules of the game some time.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

A day of shame for schumi as Alonso slides into pole

In a rather shocking turn of events, the race stewards have pronounced schumi guilty. He will now be starting the monte carlo grand prix from the back of the grid for having "deliberately impeded other drivers". I am not going to go into whether it was deliberate or not but for a world champion of his stature it is a shameful moment. I still feel he could have been given the benefit-of-doubt. But what the heck! he has been given numerous benefit of doubts in the past and the rage with the other drivers came out against him shows something more than competitiveness. Anyways, this means that the reigning world champ Fernando Alonso will start the race from pole and will have a definite shot at his first victory in these twisted streets. Now lets wait for the race.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Alonso Renault and michelin hit back at spain

So bummed that i missed the race. But couldnt have been that exciting since Alonso literally took off and a win looked more or less secure even after the first ten laps. Renault, alonso and michelin know this track all too well and that was reflected in the huge margin of victory which is a return punch from the trio to schumi,ferrari and bridgestone trio in what is turning out to be a close boxing match this season.

Alonso delighted a sell out home crowd like schumi did a week ago.

Hats off to schumi and ferrari pitting. He managed to secure a second from what was supposedly a better performing renault. Fisi dissapoints. Atleast he ended up in the podium. Great drive from Mass to end up 4th and he is proving his worth at ferrari now. Brilliant drive from kimi. Salutes to iceman for securing the fifth place after an enthralling start. Give him a good car guys, it about time.

We move into mote carlo next where qualifying would take on a greater importance than the race itself. Hope this fight continues for the rest of the season.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Pink panther sucks!

Lousy second grade comedy and worse - audience laughing their ass off for that. Sucks! Rating: 0.003 / 10

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Scuderia are back...with a vengence

Ferrari fired on all cylinders at nurburgring as schumi left alonso panting as he scorched his way to his second consecutive win this season. The plot that was kept wound up until the second round of pit stops unravelled as the renault decided to call in Alonso for his second pit stop. Up until then, things had stood at a delicate deadlock with schumi playing a waiting game matching alonso lap for lap. Throw in your best time, he said, and i'll respond with a better one.

Then Alonso pitted for the second time and schumi exploded. Its been some time for schumi since he could flex his muscles like this. For those decisive three laps that he stayed in the track, schumi showed what a good ferrari can do in his hands and when he emerged out of the pits, he was all set for his second consecutive win.

Yes, Ferrari are back! I am not a big fan of ferrari but it is a wierdly satisfying feeling when the team is at their best. You can hate them and admire them at the same time. I would rather prefer Alonso fighting against a strong schumi rather than win the championship hands down. Already this is a different season for Alonso. It wont be Alonso defending his championship position but he will be fighting for it.

As for renault it was dissapointment. Fisichella once again failed to come close to his team mate. The gulf is too wide for comfort. Agreed, he won a race but then he displays such poor consistency that i feel he might not continue in renault next year. Alonso finished a credible second. There was nothing much he could have done. He has been showing such an amazing consistency that inspite of two blistering wins shcumi has cut the championship gap just by 4 points. Will he ever finish out of the podium this season?

Mclaren dissapointed. Although there was a late charge from kimi, they did not match the performance of the renaults much less the ferraris. At least kimi is finishing races. Montoya was insipid for most of the race until he retired.

And button, he's a joke !

Well, so as barcelona weekend approaches, ferrari seem to be the strongest in performance closely followed by the renaults.Will it be happy homecoming for Alonso? Will the michelins hit back? Lets wait and watch.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

The f1 caravan moves into the Mclaren stronghold....

The F1 caravan moves to the european grand prix. After ferrari delighted their home crowd with an emphatic win, it might be the turn of iceman and his team to delight their homecrowd. Team Mclaren have been subdued to say the least in this F1 calender so far and everyone waits with bated breath for them to explode. And nurburgring might just be the place for the men in black to come back into reckoning. Kimi would be hoping to break the jinx of the ring and finish the race. He DNFed the last two races here from commanding positions from where he could have won. He will be hoping for a win this time around.

Reanult are wary of Mclaren which is obvious from all the chatter from Alonso and Fisi. Alonso might possibly be fighting with kimi this race after he put on a great effort at Imola. However the odds are stacked in his favour and yet again he is the favorite to win this race. He got lucky the last time around and would be hoping for a more convinving win this time. However the fact remains that he starts favorite in all the circuits and different racers might challenge him at different tracks. So it remains to be seen whether Imola was really a ferrari resurgence and if a black resurgence would occur in the ring. Kimi better bring all the good luck charms you have!