Paddock postcard from Silverstone 10 Jul 2005
There are countless races on the support card this weekend, and celebrities galore all through the paddock, but what is everybody most interested in? A naked man. A naked running man.
Step forward Bob McKenzie, Formula One reporter for Britain's Daily Express newspaper, who last year rashly declared that he would run naked round Silverstone in McLaren won a Grand Prix. Then came Kimi Raikkonen's triumph at Spa. Next, the call from Ron Dennis.
This morning, Bob 'Naturist World' McKenzie will make good on his declaration. In the interests of public decency strategic areas may be covered, but he is due to start his lonely lap at 11am local time, with all eyes on him. Daughter Lee, a television commentator, will wear her trademark tee-shirt which says 'The Oh My God Father' on the front and 'Sorry Silverstone' on the back, but the one party that won't have cause for regret will be the Tommy's baby charity, for which McKenzie has got sponsorship.
Back in the clothed world, Adam Carroll and James Rossiter were confirmed in leading test and development roles with BAR. Rossiter was having a weekend off from racing but Carroll fought with his customary feistiness in the first GP2 race until spinning spectacularly at Stowe. Nico Rosberg won his second consecutive race for ART Grand Prix, but second placed Heiki Kovalainen preserved his points lead. Sunday's race provided victory for Olivier Pla over Scott Speed, Kovalainen and Rosberg, Carroll climbing up to eighth. It was the first single-seater victory for veteran team boss David Price since the 1980s, by his own calculation.
In the Trofeo Vodafone Maserati race, 1995 British Grand Prix winner Johnny Herbert's charge up to second place was later stymied when co-pilot Jodie Kidd got taken out.
Meanwhile, celebrities at the track include Arsenal Football Club manager Arsene Wenger (as a guest of Toyota), cricketer Shane Warne and actor Ray Winstone. Racing faces include world champions Sir Jackie Stewart, Keke Rosberg, Jody Scheckter and John Surtees. There was also Bette Hill, the only wife and mother of world champions, daughter Brigitte, Derek Warwick, former BAT boss Martin Broughton and his wife Jocelyn, and Sir Digby Jones of the CBI. Visiting British politicians are Richard Caborn (Minister of Sport and Tourism, Peter Hain (Northern Ireland) and Geoff Hoon (Lord Privy Seal and Leader of the House of Commons).
Singer Lionel Richie showcased the annual Grand Prix Ball at Stowe School on Friday night, where Damon Hill and Patrick Head among others got their rocks off crashing dodgems into one another with paying guests sitting alongside them in the aid of charity. On Sunday the music was provided not by Eddie Jordan's band but by boogie legend Jools Holland and his Rhythm and Blues Orchestra, accompanied by various drivers and celebrities.