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Grapevine: News from the Paddock - French GP

On Yer Bike

On Yer Bike

Patrick Head returned to the Formula One paddock on Thursday evening when he made his now customary journey to Magny-Cours on his motorbike. The former Williams technical director has spent his time at the team's Oxfordshire factory since handing over the position to Sam Michael after the Monaco Grand Prix, but appeared at his hotel close to the circuit late on Thursday. He had completed the trip from England on his bike, but left it at the circuit and favoured a more comfortable BMW for the short trip to his hotel.

Welcome to the Hotel Dakota

Having dipped his toe into the hotel business in Monaco, McLaren-Mercedes driver David Coulthard is branching out now. Following the success of his Hotel Columbus in Monaco, the Scottish driver has now opened a second hotel - this time close the M1 motorway in Nottinghamshire. The new addition to his businesses, named the Hotel Dakota, is said to be offering rooms at around £80 (pounds) per night.

Ligier and Gorne Combine

Former team owner Guy Ligier and BAR co-founder Rick Gorne have teamed up after moving into office at Automobiles Martini, the French specialist single-seater racing car constructor based at Magny-Cours. Ligier, whose team earned nine wins in Formula One after entering the sport in 1976, has bought a significant share in the company, while Gorne, one of three founders of BAR and former general manager of Reynard, has joined the project.

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