Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Read All About It: The TATP Book

You may remember me mentioning TATP (Talk About The Passion), one of the increasingly rare non-ironic popular culture coverage websites, on which I used to dabble in writing about everything from Batman videogames to...  Er, some other stuff.

It was a great site, and it spawned an equally great magazine, which ran for several issues in that sadly dying medium before... You know what?  Go and read Tim's version instead, as I'm very tired and he's put it extremely well.

Now, the site that spawned a magazine has spawned a best-of book:

...Of which there's an eBook version, priced at a very reasonable £2.99, and also an actual, factual paper version, priced at a similarly reasonable £5.99.  Also, we're all very proud of the articles within - so why not give it a go?  Eh?

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Engine Blood: Hungarian GP

* Ah, Hungary.  Predictable, dependable, steady.  In other words, boring as fu- hang on a minute...  Who's this smiley chap on the top step?

* Yes!  It's another unexpected win from the only man to have broken Mercedes' stranglehold on the season thus far, Daniel "can we all please come to a consensus on how to pronounce his surname, sooner rather than later" Ricciardo, in a car neither made or powered by Mercedes.
Admittedly it was a chaotic race, helped along by weather, incidents and some odd choices by the Silver Arrows, but credit where it is due - the Antipodean sensation has repaid Red Bull's trust in him with a second win this season, highspotted by a fantastic, several-cornered will-he-won't-he-Christ-he-actually-did move on Lewis Hamilton.
* If you'd bet on Vettel having two less wins than Ricciardo at this stage of the season, you'd probably be significantly wealthier - mind you, most bookies aren't massively interested in motor racing bets, which makes it difficult for Engine Blood to monetize their one marketable talent, but that's a rant for another day. 
On the plus side, at least we don't have to put up with a floating Ray Winstone head spouting unpleasant irrelevancies at us like our soccer-loving breathren.
Anyway, Seb did give us a fantastic display of his driving prowess by retrieving a oversteer-triggered spin on the pit straight with little to no damage to the car.  Sadly it did flat spot his tyres, which put an end to any hopes of a podium.
* Speaking of podiums (d'you like the segues?  Actually got a logical flow going for once), Fernando Alonso outperformed his lame duck Ferrari again to get second, and indeed led right up to the death, before Ricciardo's newer tyres allowed him to power by.
Third went to Hammy, who used his vastly superior car to good effect to blast up the order after a pitlane start.  Cue the BBC shouting at least twice a lap about how no-one had even won a race from a pitlane start, a record which still stands for obvious reasons.  It is a testament to the topsy-turviness of the race that he also survived one of his characteristic wet weather spins.
* Fourth was championship leader Nico Rosberg, who could have won the race had Hamilton not interrupted one of his stints by ignoring team orders.  We're not going to criticise him, as this is the kind of incident that can decide a world championship.  However, with news of Mercedes' big-money wooing of Vettel coming to light in the last week, it might not be the way to keep a job.
Mind you, Engine Blood was holding forth at a good friend's wedding reception yesterday, and painted a theoretical picture of F1's future: Vettel and Rosberg in an all-German Mercedes team, Hamilton and Jules Bianchi as a latter day Mansell and Prost in Ferrari, Alonso and Japan-friendly Jenson Button in McLaren-Honda and Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat in Red Bull.
I wonder what odds a floating Ray Winstone head would give us on that?
* A few random thoughts here: a double retirement for Force India could have been costly, but McLaren couldn't do much to capitalise...  Not quite sure why or how Caterham are still going, but there they still are...  Williams may have missed their best opportunities for a win this season, but it's still a good campaign by their recent standards...  Pastor Maldonado is an anagram of 'odors napalm toad'.
* Engine Blood apologises for the break in service.  By way of compensation, we are proud to present this picture of a weasel: