Last weekend we were confronted by a friend who declared that F1 was not a sport. What do you think? His main problem was a common one: the machine. If the best driver had the best car he would win. That, for him, didn’t make it a sport. The problem is that there are so many variables in the driver and the car that to call one the best, over the course of a whole season, is very hard. Frequently the best will change from track to track.
An even more significant rebuttal, however, is to argue that men are no different from machines. The human body is a piece of technology, only slightly more complicated, and moister, than an F1 car. It can be manipulated by its manager, its fitness coach, and its other players in a team the same way a car can. If you had the best players all in one team, wouldn’t you win? I think the chances are the same as if you had the best driver and the best car. What if you had the best player in the worst team? Isn’t that the same as putting Schumacher in a Spyker?
The ‘human’ element of a sport is a myth, I believe. A group of men might as well be a machine, or men building a machine. In the end, I think the closer you look the fewer boundaries you find between F1 and football, and the less capable you are of distinguishing one from the other, saying that one is categorically better, or purer, as a sport.