Just watched the latest episode of Top Gear and enjoyed the interview with Ron Howard in anticipation of the film ‘Rush’ about the duel in 70’s F1 between James Hunt and Niki Lauda. This well-known competitive pairing came well before my time but I enjoyed watching Niki’s participation in the sport throughout the decades and like the idea of James Hunt’s stripped down and raw approach to racing representing everything remotely ‘laddish’ about racing.
I am sure the success of film ‘Senna’ contributed to Ron’s inspiration for making the film. There is something about people putting life on the line just to fulfil their passion and ambition that is spine-tingling to observe. What motivates people to carry on doing what they enjoy or believe in when that lifestyle nearly kills them? Niki Lauda endured horrific burns yet returned to race regardless. Senna, arguably, knew his car wasn’t right on the grid of what proved to be the fatal race at Imola. The camera shot of his face as he sat in the car that later killed him is haunting.
I think that is what is so appealing about Formula One – the personal struggles to be the best regardless of cost. Arguable this has become more muted over time but nethertheless it has to be respected that it is still one of the most dangerous sports in the world.
See the trailer for The Rush movie here.
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