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GP Week : Issue 55
>>F1 insight DAY 1 : The Oasis concert DAY 3 : The Media Centre our trip had opted to move himself onto our route rather than waste time popping down into France). Then we were all set to head off to Berlin for Petra Ecclestone’s fashion do that a few F1 drivers were scheduled to attend. Then we’d try and find what was left of the legendary Avus circuit before heading down to the Nürburgring for the race weekend. The first rule of all road trips, however, is that any plans you make are liable for immediate and unexpected change. This occurred shortly after the first port of call of the trip. My wife and I had been at the Oasis concert in Coventry. I’m a huge Oasis fan, whereas she hadn’t seen them since they played at Glastonbury back in about 1993. I’ll be honest, I’d seen them play better, but it was a great gig perhaps even more so for the fact that the support act The Enemy are from Coventry, and played the show of their lives. They were monstrously brilliant. So I went to drop the missus home only to drop my laptop out of the back of the car and see it smash on the floor. The trip was thus delayed by 24 hours as I shot down to buy a new computer. In the end it didn’t matter all that much as Petra’s fashion show had been cancelled ... possibly due to Bernie’s Hitler comments, but who knows. So Adam had an extra night in Belgium and I had a new computer. Next morning, at 4am, I arrived at Dover for the first time in five years, since my campervan experience, to board the red-eye to Calais. A quick nap on board, a plentiful supply of chocolate and Red Bull in the car, and by lunchtime I was in Belgium. With only a few hours between my arrival in Geel and our ETA in Germany for afternoon interviews in the F1 paddock, we had to put our collective foot down. But with our homage to Avus out of the window, we decided instead to pop into Zolder on the way through to the Nürburgring to pay our respects at the circuit where the great Gilles Villeneuve lost his life. Zolder itself, to me, just feels eerie. I have never been able to put my finger on it, but it reminds me of a derelict army barracks I used to ride my bicycle around as a kid. It just has a weird air around it. We made it to the Nürburgring in excellent time, and could barely believe our eyes at what awaited us. Because it wasn’t the Nürburgring as we knew it. Oh no. They’d spent an awful lot of money and it looked incredible. The road system worked, there DAY 2 : The Sat Nav