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A personal message from Joanne Burnett

NEWS STORY
19/03/2009

We (wickedly) told her it was enough to bring a tear to a glass eye, but she persisted, like we always knew she would.

The reality is that today is a sad day, for it not only marks the end of winter testing for the 2009 season it also marks the breaking up of various test teams as, under the new rules which ban all in-season testing, they will be surplus to requirements. As we have said before, cutting costs inevitably means shedding jobs.

We know from the feedback that you have enjoyed Joanne Burnett's pictures from the various tests in recent years, especially her ability to pick out the behind the scenes stuff, her ability to focus on the human beings that make F1 what it is, what we love, as opposed to shot after shot of the cars.

Therefore, on what is a sad day for many within the pitlane, we let Joanne tell it her way:

"Today is the final day of 2009 testing... it is indeed a very sad day for all who have been behind the scenes... with the unsung heroes of F1. These men and women receive so little praise for their sterling work and yet with out them there would be no racing.

"Most now face an uncertain future, for without testing teams don't need a dedicated test team, and even if the powers that be come to their senses and reinstate testing it will be too late... the 'families' will have been broken up.

"They are, and I am lucky enough to include myself as a very small part, 'families' each with distant relatives in other teams but nevertheless families.

"I would like to thank each and every one of those men and women who adopted me three years ago and made my life a sunnier place. I wish I could mention you all by name but you know who you are.

"Testing has always been about the people. It has been a pleasure to photograph you doing what you do best, making a racing car fit to challenge for a place in F1 history.

"We will all survive. I will continue probably in other formulas but somehow those wonderful days and long nights spent working till the early hours of the morning and beyond will never be the same.

"Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Farewell but not goodbye my friends... my family."

Joanne

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