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GP Week : Issue 75
GPWEEK OPINION >> cops were understandably jumpy. F1 drivers should be treated the same as everyone else -- no better, no worse. Lewis will receive a fine, and whatever it is, he won't lose sleep over paying it. He might lose some sleep, though, over the embarrassment the whole ordeal caused, with locals ringing into radio shows to call the driver "a drop-kick." When he should have been going through things with his engineers, Lewis spent most of the weekend apologizing to people like Charlie Whiting, his sponsors, his team, the sport as a whole, and the entire population of Australia. The Italian police have always let wayward F1 drivers off in exchange for an autograph. But other police forces have been known to make examples of them, because they are role models to many motorists. In 1959, a Liverpool judge handed Stirling Moss a hefty fine after he was caught speeding in "a high- powered sportscar". In fact, it was a Triumph Herald with 38.5hp. The judge was a little OTT. If you know the boss it helps. Rene Arnoux -- who is mental, by the way -- was pinched doing 242km/h through a French village with a 90km/h limit. However, because he played pétanque with Francois Mitterrand, the Ferrari driver avoided a spell of porridge. When Jenson Button was busted for speeding in a diesel 3-Series a decade ago, BMW paid the fine as a thank you for all the lovely publicity. I'd say that's the least Mercedes could do. Hamilton's been busted twice now in their motors. That makes me want to buy one twice as much. Mark Webber joked that Lewis should take driving lessons from Tiger Woods. I assume he means tutorage on how to hit a fire hydrant square on, rather than improving his golf swing. But by all the media hoo-hah over the boy wonder's 'indiscretion', he might has well have done a Tiger and shagged a dozen groupies behind Nicole's back. Mitterrand would have supported that too. ow the book at Lewis Hamilton (right) joins a list of famous 'hoons' including Renault star Rene Arnoux (left and below) ... 25