Formula 1 is much bigger than one bad news story. It's been a great season in terms of on-track competition, with some truly unpredictable race results. But we've had so many scandals - from spygate, to liegate, to crashgate and other things ending in 'gate' - it's time for us to turn the page. Renault has been dealt with by the FIA, the sanctions have been handed out - it's over.
At Renault, the people involved in the scandal are now no longer there. Flavio Briatore, the captain, has lost his stripes. Pat Symonds, the senior engineering director, has gone too. I can't help wondering if the whole affair was just as much about the individuals involved as the scenario that transpired. But their absence won't bring down the whole machine.
I don't expect Renault will be in the hunt for a podium this weekend, but it's still going to be a fully-functioning F1 team. Who knows, maybe the next thing to rock F1 is that love will break out. We all love the sport, let's hope the sport can love itself for a change - let's have a Singapore love-in!
Lights, camera, action
It's the return of the night race, and I don't think the Nelson Piquet-manufactured events of last year will tarnish this year's race in any way.
Singapore is a great venue, very well organised and, despite the uncertainty of going into the unknown last year, there was great excitement from everyone about how everything went.
Okay, it's not a classic track like Spa, Suzuka or Monaco, but it's got its own challenges and is really bumpy in places. The surface made the car unpredictable, which made drivers think twice about trying passing manoeuvres. If there is one thing I hope they've improved, it would be to have flattened those bumps.
We all quickly got used to the level of lighting, which was absolutely fine but just lower than natural daylight, and I'm looking forward to seeing it as a spectator this time, rather than the cockpit view I had last year. Maybe it's because I had a really good race and scored points, but I haven't got anything other than good feelings about this event.
In terms of track layout, the are no long, high-g corners at Singapore, so I imagine the KERS system will come into its own, as we witnessed at the similarly point-and-squirt Valencia. But there only a couple of corners that have a long straight afterwards, so we'll have to wait and see what the tangible benefits are.
Getting back on track
I think Singapore will redress the balance for a number of teams in the overall scheme of things. For example, I can't see Force India being the factor it has been in recent races at Spa and Monza, because the circuit might not suit its low-downforce car. I'm not sure about how well Red Bull will fare, as there's not many meaty corners for the car to get its teeth into.
I'd expect McLaren to be strong regardless as its car seems to have excellent mechanical grip, as well as the strongest KERS on the grid. Brawn's pace will be interesting, as Jenson went on the record at the last grand prix stating, "we don't have a problem with tyre warm-up," which is very much in contrast to what he's said at every other race! It's an evening race, and I'm told there's a more-than-likely chance of rain this weekend, so I hope for his sake he's right because he's certainly not going to get the benefit of any direct sunlight!
As the title races towards its endgame, there is no room for slip-ups from any of the world championship frontrunners.
Forget the scandals, let's get on with the racing.
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