Home - The Official Formula 1 Website Skip to content

Paddock Postcard from Shanghai 16 Oct 2005

(L to R): Nick Fry (GBR) BAR Team Principal presents Jenson Button (GBR) BAR with a picture to commemorate his 100th GP.
Formula One World Championship, Rd19,  Chinese Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Shanghai, China, 15 October 2005 The sun sets on Paul Stoddart (AUS) Minardi Team Owner.
Formula One World Championship, Rd19,  Chinese Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Shanghai, China, 15 October 2005 Peter Sauber (SUI) Sauber Team Owner.
Formula One World Championship, Rd19,  Chinese Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Shanghai, China, 15 October 2005 (L to R): Jenson Button (GBR) BAR and Nick Fry (GBR) BAR Team Principal with Jim Rosenthal (GBR) ITV-F1 Presenter, who is hosting his final GP.
Formula One World Championship, Rd19,  Chinese Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Shanghai, China, 15 October 2005 (L to R): Pierre Dupasquier (FRA) Michelin Competitions Director with  Nick Shorrock, Director of Michelin F1 Activities.
Formula One World Championship, Rd19,  Chinese Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Shanghai, China, 15 October 2005

The second Chinese Grand Prix marks the end of an era in Formula One racing, and the paddock has been full of emotional farewells.

The fun started on Wednesday when Jenson Button hosted a riotous party downtown for the British media, where father John and manager Richard Goddard provided much of the life and soul. The emotions began to flow on Thursday as BAR were the hosts to a tearful farewell from journalist Ray Matts of British newspaper the Daily Mail and from Jim Rosenthal, front man for British television broadcaster ITV.

In a rather more decorous, but similarly emotional, cocktail party on Friday Peter Sauber took his leave as a team principal, and it was Michelin’s rollerblading tyre supremo Pierre Dupasquier’s turn on Saturday. As a measure of the Frenchman’s popularity, rivals from Bridgestone were there in force and Bernie Ecclestone joked to the gathered audience that they were there to thank Michelin for their only victory of the season.

Later that evening Jordan celebrated their 250th and last Grand Prix, and Paul Stoddart threw a giant barbecue in Minardi’s stilted pavilion to say his goodbye.

Emotions were running high in many quarters, as the end of a long, but gripping, season finally reached its conclusion. Next year Sauber will be BMW, Minardi will be Squadra Toro Rosso, Jordan will be Midland and BAR will be Honda.

In Formula One racing, nothing stays the same for long.