Sunday, 27 June 2010

McLaren Watch

Ok, so, technically it's 2-0 to the Germans today, as Vettel won the European Grand Prix as well as his compatriots proving what we all knew in our hearts - the current England footballers are not as good as the industry would have us believe: The Golden whatevers? Who termed them that, their agents? Give 'em the Golden Boot is all I can say!

Anyway, Lewis survived an early scare to drive to second and Jenson was third, so they maintain their lead at the top of the driver standings, although Vettel has jumped up to third. Webber proved that Red Bull really do have wings - the re-tweeted joke doing the rounds, following his massive accident; how he walked away a testament to the toughness of these cars. Do check the on-board camera!

Lewis is on 127, Jenson 121, Vettel 115, Webber 103, Alonso on 98. McLaren still at the top on 248, Red Bull 218 and Ferrari a distant third on 165.

Thursday, 24 June 2010

The things they say ...

Matt was feeling a little poorly the other day, so along we went to the local surgery. He nudged me once there and said, pointing to the electronic notice board: "He's gonna be a lot later than that, mum, don't they know he's stuck in a box?"

Monday, 21 June 2010

Why we won't win the football ...

... although, as an Englishwoman, it goes without saying I hope I'm proven wrong.

The distinct lack of heart within the team against Algeria, combined with Rooney's little tirade set me thinking as to why the national football team appear to suffer a lack of motivation. And I'm probably being mean, but I think it comes down to need.

English Premiership players enjoy an extraordinary lifestyle, with money and riches that far outstrip any of our other professional sportsmen and women, many of whom consistently deliver the results at World level: Our triathletes, rowers, swimmers, sailors, cyclists and so on - you know who they are if you're a regular reader of this blog. Even our rugby and cricket teams, vilified if they lose, have both delivered world titles in the past seven years - and seriously, who expects them to win every time out? Except the media, obviously. But the players know they have to deliver consistently or they're out, there's always someone new waiting to take their spot. Where's that strength in depth in football? It's the single biggest sport in this country isn't it? (Apart from fishing and martial arts I believe - and competitors in both deliver on the world stage).

So why? As I say, I think it's need: Individuals in the so-called "unfashionable" sports have to deliver and keep on delivering, to retain funding or attract sponsorship and to keep their place in the squad. Steve Redgrave, from my distant memory, didn't have regular sponsorship until after his third Olympic Gold. His third, for goodness sake! They have to deliver, again and again, to be able to compete at the same level. But our professional footballers don't need to, do they? They've got their £100k a week contract, irrespective of injury or loss of form and seem to retain their place in the national side even if suffering from both. Is there any strength in depth? (My teen son said he'll play for England for nothing, he can at least control the ball! Meiow!) Ian Botham said just pulling on the England shirt was motivation enough.

From being able to name the whole Ashes 2005 side, I'm struggling now to name any (just too busy to keep up, sorry lads!) Likewise the rugby team has changed majorly since the 2003 World victory. But the football team? I reeled off who the squad was likely to be and yet I take less notice of football than I do anything else. So does it come down to media pressure, building them all up so much it gives us false hopes or a management too scared to try anyone new? Everyone has an off day - but the whole team practically at the same time? Something seriously lacking, isn't there? Pride? Desire? Need? We'll see on Wednesday.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

The things they say ...

I bought a new air freshener for the car. And the one I bought was red, to match the car, because I'm very sad like that. But it was called 'Passion' and promised an exotic aroma, musky, enticing.

Matt opened the door this morning and said: "Phew, smells like my old nursery ..."

Unfortunately, I have to agree - I may as well have hung a kitchen wipe off the mirror.

Sunday, 13 June 2010

McLaren Watch

Wow - who'd a thought it! I mean, I did, when Lewis stormed to pole position yesterday, but when he lost the lead today and off went Webber again, I doubted! So I watched - and the boys brought home a one-two result again! Fab-u-lous!

Strategy and luck with regard to tyres played their part in a brilliant result for McLaren - a backmarker gave Jenson the opportunity for a cheeky little pass on Alonso - watch the highlights here. It sees the leaderboard with just 15 points now covering the top 4 drivers.

1. Lewis 109

2. Jenson 106

3. Mark Webber 103

4. Fernando Alonso 94

And at the head of the constructors table, McLaren extend their lead over Red Bull and Ferrari. And I'd tell you by how many points but neither the BBC website nor Teletext have updated the tables yet. I'm assuming Jake is too busy celebrating with McLaren ...

Monday, 7 June 2010


Last weekend was certainly a great one for our motorsport boys - as well as the McLaren result, we had a one-two in the Indycar 500, with Dario Francitti and Dan Wheldon. Sending best wishes for a speedy recovery to Mike Conway too, following his spectacular crash in the same race. (And to Valentino Rossi - I know, he's not British but we love him!)

Danny Greaves and Heather Cockroft both set new world records in their respective paralympic sports, Greaves in the Paralympic World Cup. In the same championships, Jason Smyth won 100m and 200m Gold, visually impaired sprinter Libby Clegg won 100m, Tracey Hinton the 200m and Stephen Miller won the club event. The GB football team secured a bronze - our basketball team won Gold! Poolside, Ellie Simmonds broke the World Record.

In the rowing World Cup, another one-two for GB, as paralympian Tom Aggar clinched Gold ahead of Andy Houghton in the men's single scull, with victory for the mixed adaptive coxed four of Kelsie Gibson, James Roe, Naomi Riches, Ryan Chamberlain and cox Rhiannon Jones. The rest of the squad aren't doing too badly either - nine golds, six silvers and a bronze!

World champion Alistair Brownlee picked up where he left off, storming to Triathlon victory in Madrid upon his return from injury. Helen Jenkins took third place in the World Championship in Madrid, while Chrissie Wellington hit the winning trail again.

Sailing - World Cup Gold for Ed Wright, European Silvers for him and Lucy MacGregor's crew. And World Cup Gold for Nic Asher and Elliot Willis, plus silvers for Nick Dempsey and another for Lucy MacGregor's crew, with bronzes for Bryony Shaw and Helena Lucas.

In fencing, Richard Kruse took World Cup Silver, as GB also took Bronze with Laurence Halstead in the Tokyo Grand Prix and Chrystall Nicol in the World Cup in Germany.

Modern Pentathlon European Junior Championships saw an individual silver for Katy Burke, contributing to overall team Gold for GB.

And at the Taekwondo European Championship, Aaron Cooke and Sarah Stevenson both won Gold.