What do you miss from the old days?


Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
Browsing through F1 Rejects there is a new article on Moises Solana who only took part in his home Grand Prix in Mexico back in the 60's and I realised I miss drivers who popped up at their home race or at one or two Grands Prix during a season in a year old car or something they cobbled together in their garage.

I know we have people of all generations on here, just wondered what you missed from your years of watching F1.

Mine's more of a general issue - the lack of FIA officiousness.

I know sports evolve, but see the FIA patch overall thread for an example of everything that's wrong with F1 at the moment.
I was surprised that I couldn't think of all that much, really. If you'd asked a few years ago, I'd have said I miss the endearingly crap tail-end teams...

I agree on the manual gearboxes, and more open access at race weekends (also more support races). But I suppose the thing I miss most of all is variety - engines, tyres, car shapes, driving styles, reliability, even motorhomes. F1 seems increasingly homogenised in virtually every respect. With the advent of the Tilkedromes you could be watching a race anywhere; circuits like Zandvoort, Osterreichring and Kyalami had their own character and were immediately identifiable.
I agree with Galahad (no surprise) on a large part of his list. Manual gearboxes, variety of engines (why can't a manufacturer determine whether to use an inline 5 if they think it will proove advantageous?) etc. I also miss steel brakes and the longer braking zones they required. I also long for a return to relatively tiny front wings of bygone days (look at what prevailed in 1969).Now that I think about it, I miss the beauty of low-nosed cars
Unfinished edges to the track, make the run off areas any size you like, but let the quality of the track set the rules;

Marlborough - no idea why, but I actually looked forward to cigarette advertising (especially since banning it the only change is to increase their bottom line)

I also loved going to Brands - a great place to go to. Rubbish access, but a picnic in the woods always felt surreal, but great.

As with all - track freedom....

Sunny summers, white Christmasses, easy going lifestyle - although I do have plenty of retrospective rose titnted glasses...
Solana is the only person ever to compete in car no.13.

I miss gravel traps that punished drivers foolish enough to run wide. (Have you seen the new Spoon Curve!)

Also drivers rarely retiring because of errors, it seems the cars are too easy to drive.

I miss the days when the FIA didn't strangle development as they do now.
I miss Nigel and Senna.
I also miss the cars with their noses on the tarmac rather that stuck up in the air.
And Red Dwarf
And big WagonWheels before they shrunk them.
Oh yes and The Marlborough Girls. I really miss the Marlborough Girls.

Oh, the commentary with Martin Brundle is very good mostly. But it's not the same as Murray & James. But I suppose it has more to do with nostalgia and "what do you miss" than it has anything to do with quality. Brundle really has come into his own.
So much already covered - like mechanical cars as opposed to computer regulated and the ability to choose whether it be tyres, etc.

The cult of the 'driver hero' and some drivers, such as Graham Hill, James Hunt and others - the 'gentleman drivers' and there were several who stopped their own race to help out a rival in trouble.

The fact that anyone with a few bob could create a team - e.g. Hesketh Racing, irrespective of the ability to 'perform' - some of out best loved teams came about this way.

The fact that Silverstone is now a fortress - not so long ago you could rock up in your old jalopy and whizz round the track to your heart's content; all practices were free, as was tyre testing and it's only in the last few years that you have to pay.

The non-existence of health and safety - the guy with the chequered flag actually on the track and no-one saying it was too wet to race.

The ability to race without interference from the stewards, to produce a car better than your opponents and the romantic ideal that the best man on the day wins.

OK, so who is going to shoot me down in flames this time? :)
Oh, I forgot - the drivers choice of garb - greasy overalls and a flat cap :D and no seat belt!
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