57: Alex Albon: “Adversity has given me a strong personality…”
A year ago, Alex Albon didn’t have an F1 drive, and his prospects of getting one looked slim at best. He had no affiliation with an F1 team and, despite shining in F2, he was having to looking at alternative series in which to earn a living. It was not the first time his career faced a crossroads, but this time, things were turned upside down when he got a call from Red Bull – the same Red Bull that had dropped him years earlier – about driving for Toro Rosso in 2019. On this week’s show, the British-born Thai talks about that rollercoaster journey to the top, as well his sensational blockbuster promotion to Red Bull, his childhood obsession with Michael Schumacher and much more.
56: Pastor Maldonado: “Sometimes I went over the limit. No more than others, but my mistakes were always on the front page…”
Pastor Maldonado was always a headline maker. The Venezuelan arrived in F1 in 2011 with Williams as GP2 champion, and the very next year delivered the team a first win in over seven years with a dazzling performance in Spain. But for all his speed, and all his talent, Maldonado also found himself on the end of a large amount of criticism, sometimes from his fellow drivers, sometimes from the press, for his flamboyant and always committed approach.
This week on Beyond The Grid, Maldonado pulls no punches as he discusses the highs and lows of his F1 career, including that famous victory in Barcelona, his run-ins with other drivers, being labelled a pay driver, the pressure from his homeland and much, much more.
55: Tony Brooks: “If you made a mistake in my day, you were in the lap of the gods…”
He raced in an era of heroes; a time when cars had no seat belts, yet could still be raced at averages of 150mph. Many he raced against in the 1950s – the first decade of the world championship – perished in pursuit of speed, but Tony Brooks emerged unscathed with six Grand Prix victories, having come ever so close to winning the world title his talents surely deserved. This week on Beyond The Grid, we caught up with this giant of F1, now 87, to look back over his remarkable career, which saw him move from the world of dentistry to going toe-to-toe with the likes of Fangio and Moss, driving for Ferrari, mastering the treacherous Nurburgring and much more.
54: SPECIAL EPISODE: Six of the best anecdotes from Season 2 so far!
It’s the F1 summer break, and on this week’s episode Tom has trawled through the archives and picked out six of his favourite anecdotes from Season 2 so far. We won’t give anything away, but listen out for gems from Kimi Raikkonen, David Coulthard and Jean Alesi among others. So whether you’re a diehard fan or a new listener to the show, sit back and enjoy some fabulous F1 conversations with the best in the business…
53: SPECIAL EPISODE: Jo Ramirez on being in the middle of Senna and Prost at McLaren
He may not be a household name, but Jo Ramirez is one of those people who has seen it all and worked with them all. He broke into F1 in the 1960s, working with emerging superstar Ricardo Rodriguez. His Mexican countryman sadly perished before his star had truly emerged, but by then Ramirez was set on a path that would eventually see him work with Jackie Stewart at Tyrrell, Emerson Fittipaldi at Copersucar, and - most famously - with Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost at McLaren in the midst of their bitter rivalry.
This week on Beyond The Grid, Ramirez - a former mechanic, team manager and co-ordinator - lifts the lid of his four decades in motor racing’s premier category, from his early years working alongside a young Ron Dennis and Dan Gurney, to his latter years alongside Mika Hakkinen.