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The Armchair Driver: Bahrain

This not the Armchair Driver... This is Fernando Alonso.
The C4F1 Armchair Driver desperately tries for clean air by getting all his chores done before coverage begins. It’s Easter day - so hard sell – but Channel 4 have scheduled my daughter’s favourite film “Hop” before the race so the telly is already on.

Chores completed for F1 pass - Four

1. Hang washing/ get washing in again because of rain shower (I argued this was two chores but was overruled)
2. Feed dog and toddler (being careful not to mix up food)
3. Walk dog and toddler (of course, this is fun, not a chore)
a) Decide which to chase after when toddler and dog run in opposite directions
b) Spend half an hour searching the woods for dog carrying bored and increasingly heavy toddler (would it be okay to chase the dog first next time?)
4. Made everyone drinks and hot cross buns in bed this morning (this is only a chore between me and you)

Shouts at or near TV - Four

1st corner (Mummy – she keeps asking what the cars are doing)
Max’s brake failure (Max – no!)
Hamilton in the pits 
Slow Mercedes pit stop 

Armchair Driver Racing Incidents

First Corner

Hamilton’s nose pointing through Bottas’ line - mind games - put the whipper-snapper in his place.
“Daddy, what’s that car doing?”
“Daddy, what’s that car doing?”
“Daddy, what’s that car doing?”
Lights out.
“Daddy, what’s that car doing?”
“Daddy, what’s that car doing?”
“Mummy!” (Sorry, it’s what me and my wife call each other in earshot of our daughter). 
Good start from Hamilton - he’s going to nail - hold the phone - Bottas sweeping in front - Vettel approaching wide - Hamilton third after the first corner - that’s that then - flippin’ phone – 
“Mummy!  Could you get the phone... and the toddler…?”

Max in barrier

What?! From overtake king to the wall. Sublime to the ridiculous. Smack! Doesn’t even stop. Did he fall asleep or something? Typical teenager. Can’t concentrate for longer than…
Oh, brake failure. Well, I knew it wouldn’t be his fault really. I mean, the boy’s a genius. I struggled to get out of bed before noon when I was his age. Kick to the barrier. Ouch. Mind your accelerator foot. Do they have pedals? Or is it all on their consoles these days? Nice to see some passion though. Sports people are too… professional these days…

Hamilton holding up Ricciardo

My daughter squashes blueberries on white patch of the dog’s fur. Dog doesn’t seem to mind and Hamilton is holding up Ricciardo in the pit lane, so AD decides to ignore this turn of events and take the penalty if and when it comes. Hamilton gets five seconds for driving ‘unnecessarily slowly’ in the pit lane. DC said it would be OK - pit lane’s part of the track. AD wonders whether being in room alone with dog and toddler makes blueberry juice on white fur a parenting incident. Shan’t be asking DC’s advice. Especially after the grilling he gave Toto over changing nappies!

Armchair Driver Pit Stops

Drinks taken
1 bottle of ale
2 espressos (in 1 cup)
3 cups of tea

Snacks eaten
Salted popcorn - American sized bowl of
Tea cakes - 2 of
Wine gums - fistful of
Tortilla chips - bowl of with slightly the wrong side of hot salsa (hence third cup of tea)

Visits to the loo - 4 (don’t judge - I’m in my mid-forties)
Formation lap - surely we all do?
Safety car - Mercedes’ pit stops were so slow, had to go after them
Missing action - Why is Hamilton suddenly second?
Ooh, ooh, hop, hop… Vettel from Hamilton… gotta go.. well, Bottas third step surely… shouldn’t have had that third tea

Armchair Driver Race Summary

Good season in prospect. Fears about overtaking allayed. Ferrari and Red Bull looking like reasonable challenge to Mercedes and Bottas up to the task.

Armchair Driver Strategy Going Forward

Try and get family actually out of the house before lights out. Preliminary ideas – make them a picnic – tickets to local attractions (although this could be costly and I risk having to go too)