Lime Rock’s claim to have agreed terms with Bernie Ecclestone to host a second round of the world championship in America was one of yesterday’s better April Fools jokes.
The operators of the 1.5-mile course in Lakeville, Conneticut, put out a press release yesterday attributing some amusing quotes to Bernie Ecclestone about circuit owner Skip Barber:
“I met Skip in Monaco back in the mid-70s, when I was running Brabham and Max [Mosley] was trying to stick Skip into that crap-can March. When I heard from one of my many minions that America’s New England region didn’t have an F1 race, well, I was shocked. So I rang up Skip.”
The release continued:
“Ecclestone, who had gathered 241 racing reporters around his feet inside his quaint $650 million cabin in Askwith, Worchestershire-on-Gloucestershire-no-thanks-to-Shropshire, England, also revealed that Formula One Management will not charge Lime Rock Park the normal one-year rights fee of $21 billion. ‘Instead, Skip’s going to buy me dinner at Mizza’s Pizza – and he has to change the oil in one of my Range Rovers,’ Ecclestone said.
“On the other side of the Atlantic, Barber said, ‘As much as I would like an F1 race at Lime Rock, my handshake agreement with Bernie does not include an oil change. We’re still negotiating. I think rotating the Hankooks on his Wolseley 16/60 is sufficient, really.’
“Because of this groundbreakingly different business case, Barber said he will set ticket prices accordingly.
“‘I’m thinking $12.50, plus the 10 percent Connecticut Amusement-Admission Tax, for a three-day pass,’ Barber said.
“Ecclestone was quoted further as saying, ‘I am also very excited to bring my 75-meter motorhome, Helga’s Revenge, to the infamous Lime Rock infield camping area for the Formula One race. I personally love the painfully passé ‘No Fear’ bumper stickers you see on the campers. I mean, literally, they’re stuck to their arses. As well, the plush pigs along the camping area’s roadsides really do make me feel at home. Well, at least one or two of them.'”
Cramming 22 F1 cars onto a circuit that’s more than half a mile below regulation length would definitely make for entertaining racing – certainly enough to justify a $13.75 entry fee!