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GP Week : 13-Oct-2009
GPWEEK OPINION >> of racing, will he deserve it more? Will he go down as a 'great?' And if Jenson wins this title with a couple of low-point scores, will he deserve the title any less? Will his victory be underwhelming? Will he be 'un-great?' Midway through last week, I had a small insight into Jenson's mindset going into what could be the most vital weekend of his Formula 1 career. A video link appeared on his facebook page. It featured a man named Nick Vujicic. Born in Melbourne, Australia, with the rare Tetra-amelia disorder, Nick is limbless, missing both arms at shoulder level and has one small foot with two toes protruding from his left thigh. Graduating from college at the age of 21 with a double major in Accounting and Financial Planning, he now travels the world as a motivational speaker. As part of his motivational talk, he lies on the ground and asks those watching how it could be possible for him to ever stand up, without the aid of limbs? His reply was simple, bold and striking. If Nick tries to stand 100 times and fails, he says, he will learn with every failed attempt what he needs to do differently. Each failed attempt takes him closer to his goal, to the point that after however many failed attempts, he will have learned how to stand ... on his own. The very posting of the video on his facebook page gives us an idea of Jenson's own rebuttal to the talk that he, in some way, may not be a deserving champion if he takes the 2009 crown. It doesn't matter how he does it. It doesn't matter how many attempts fail, how many trials end in his falling over. At the end of it all, the only thing that matters is that he reaches his goal. That he stands up on his own. No matter how he does it, be it in one attempt or 100. It is the fact that he's done it at all that counts. a chance of the championship, it would still be more than anything about these two men. The balance has teetered over the course of the season. It has been mainly in Rossi's favour. Called upon to dig deeper than ever, he had struck gold more often than not. Every time it swings the other way, one is tempted to mark it as a turning point. In this way, the last round in Portugal was a major turning point. Lorenzo wins, Rossi fourth, almost half a minute behind. After a rare setting error, under pressure. Or was it? This see-saw is not going to settle either way just yet. A betting man would follow form. The money's still on Rossi. But the battle isn't only over this year's championship. Rossi versus Lorenzo is the key confrontation of each of their careers, and of the current racing era. One that Rossi relishes all the less since his rival's bike is the one he has brought to a pitch of near perfection. It is all set to continue next year, given that contracts are already signed. Even so, speculation is rife on the wilder shores of the Italian and Spanish Press that Rossi will switch to the vengeful red of Ducati at the end of this season, in disgust at the way Yamaha has continued to expose him to this dreadful threat. Can't see it happening. And perhaps not even for 2011. What does Rossi have left to prove, other than that he is merely mortal, and inevitably getting older? No. The grand master is going to have to keep digging deeper and deeper. Until he runs out of gold. n a classic battle imself 21