Aug. 2, 2005

Someone to Watch Over Us

I was at the gym this afternoon for some physiotherapy and saw the early live coverage of the Air France Flight 358 crash at Toronto's Pearson Airport.

What a shock. The jet was in a ravine at the end of one of the main runways, burning furiously. in full view of a highway traffic camera (which became the main feed for all the news channels). There were dozens of emergency vehicles at the top of the slope, but no apparent attempt being made to extinguish the flames. I felt helpless watching, not knowing if there were passengers still inside. It turns out that all 308 crew and passengers had managed to escape before the flames took hold, with only minor injuries. Almost like a magic trick.

Update: One of Sheryl's friends was onboard the flight and gave an extensive TV interview in the aftermath. What an experience to be able to walk (or run) away from!

In more mundane news I finally saw the Hungarian Grand Prix on tape this evening. A good race on a slow track with plenty of first corner excitement, including a flip by Christian Klien's Red Bull car. Kimi Raikkonen qualified fourth but managed to get up to second behind pole-sitter Michael Schumacher's Ferrari on the first lap. Some strategic rethinking of his pit-stop timing enabled him to get ahead of Michael, who was ahead but slower and he left Michael in his dust. Kimi's teammate Juan Pablo Montoya had to retire with a gearbox problem about half way through the race, so it was a nail-biter wondering if Kimi would succumb to the same defect. The gear box lasted long enough for him to win though. Fernando Alonso, who leads the championship race, qualified well too but damaged his front wing in the first corner. He stopped to replace it, but he just wasn't competitive. He was actually lapped! David Coulthard plowed into Alonso's broken-off wing at high speed and spun out badly. Both Red Bull cars out on the first lap. Ouch.

Listening to: Magic by The Cars from Heartbeat City.

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