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Hours ahead of the launch of a publicity campaign which reveals the McLaren drivers fantasy of a Grand Prix on the streets of London, the media has gone into meltdown. At around 19:30 tonight, Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button will unveil their idea for a London Grand Prix by Santander, at a prestigious event in the heart of the capital. Invites went out a couple of weeks back. "Ever imagined what a London Grand Prix might look like? Jenson and Lewis have." It read. Sure enough, there were the two McLaren drivers, pictured in front of a number of iconic London landmarks; the Houses of Parliament, the London Eye, the Gherkin, St Paul's and the Shard. All that was missing was a pigeon on Lewis' head, a Dick van Dyke chimney sweep and a couple of Pearly Kings and Queens. In short, ahead of the British Grand Prix, one of McLaren's main sponsors has come up with a publicity campaign, albeit a rather intriguing one. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on your standpoint, it comes just days after sections of the media ran a preposterous story claiming that a couple of individuals are hoping to run a Grand Prix inside the Olympic Stadium in Stratford, East London. It is a proposal that Pitpass, like other serious publications, didn't even dignify with an article. However, this, combined with tonight's London Grand Prix by Santander has sent sections of the media into overdrive. Indeed, some are claiming that Bernie Ecclestone has said he is willing "to pay more than £35m" to stage such an event. Bernie pay? Get a grip.
Then again, talk of such an event, especially with Ecclestone offering to cover the costs, is unlikely to go down well with the promoters of the New Jersey event or any other race promoter struggling to scrape together the relevant fees. Indeed, what would Ecclestone's good mate, Ron Walker, driving force behind the new circuits association (FOPA) make of such an offer? There's been talk of such an event for as long as anyone can remember, but it won't be happening, not anytime soon, and certainly not in the Olympic Stadium. That said, full kudos to Nav Sidhu and the team behind tonight's Santander event, it's a great idea... and, in the eyes of this particular journo, far surpasses the legendary diamond shed on the streets of Monaco by an errant Jaguar driver all those years ago.
Anyway, all together now... "Um diddle diddle diddle um diddle ay, Um diddle diddle diddle um diddle ay...
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