Too Fat Too Old Too Young
December 11, 2000 | 12:00 P.M. EST
Montoya, who is 5’6” and weighs about 161 lbs., was told he must lose about 10 pounds before the season begins on March 4 in Melbourne, Australia.
Williams technical director Patrick Head is convinced that the ‘Colombian Comet’ can be even faster if he slims down from his current weight of 11.5 stones to around 10.75 stones. According to the Scientific American Desk Reference, a 'stone' is equal to 14 pounds or 6.35 kilograms.
"He had the old roll of fat around the middle, and was five kilos heavier than he was two years ago," said Head. "I think he’s been into the burgers and chips. He will have to raise his game enormously, the way Jacques Villeneuve did."
Montoya, 25, said despite the coming New Year’s Eve and Christmas celebrations, he shouldn’t have much of a problem losing the love handles.
"I realize this is what I need to work on to do well, and I shall," Montoya said.
Villeneuve, who also came to Formula One directly from the American-based CART Series in 1996, worked hard to tone his physique to attune himself to the level of fitness required for F1. Villenueve won the F1 World Championship for Williams in 1997.
Formula One Must Find a New Voice
Longtime Formula One TV commentator Murray Walker announced Monday that he will retire at the end of the 2001 season.
Walker, who has missed only one race since he began covering the sport 51 years ago, will do commentary for 12 of the 17 races this season, making way for his successor to find his footing.
"My love for the sport and my privileged place in it is undiminished." said Walker, 77. "I am already immensely looking forward to the start of the new season, which will obviously be gigantically emotional and important for me. It will give me the opportunity to thank all the people within the Formula One world who have supported me all these years.”
No successor has been named as of yet, but pit lane reporter James Allen is a likely suspect.
It’s a Boy!
Former Formula one champion Mika Hakkinen’s wife Erja gave birth to a baby boy early Monday morning in Monaco.
Hakkinen, who did not release the name of the child yet, told members of the media that both mother and baby are in good health and equally good spirits.
He told reporters last week that he is “scared and excited,” but also that he welcomes the “new compromises it brings to my life.”
Hakkinen will reportedly stay in Monaco with wife and baby through Christmas and the New Year and will rejoin McLaren for testing sometime soon after January 1.
Ralf Opposed to Easy Entry
Williams driver Ralf Schumacher doesn’t like the FIA’s approval of young Kimi Raikkonen and he’s telling the world.
Raikkonen’s application for a super license was approved when the FIA met last week, despite the young driver’s lack of experience in the more stable feeder systems like Formula 3 o as a test driver.
Raikkonen, 21, drove in Formula Renault last season and has just 23 single-seat races under his belt.
"You have to fix a limit," Schumacher said. "I'm not saying anything against Raikkonen personally but there are rules that you must respect. In my opinion you should not go directly from Formula Renault into Formula One."
The majority of drivers on the formula one grid have driven for years in junior classes and skipping the ranks seems to be popular these days. One of the words on everyone’s lips last year when Jenson Button entered Formula One straight from Formula Three was safety.
"To become a Formula One driver you have to go through at least one Formula Three season if not one in Formula 3000,” Schumacher said “Those Formulas are the schools for Formula One and if you don't need to go through them anymore, they might disappear. It wouldn't be a good thing because that's where you learn the job."