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I’m supposed to be tidying my room, but everything distracts me. I am now paging through my photo album. It has all my favourite pictures in it. My most favourite is the very last one. Save the best for last, you know.
It is a picture of a man, well built and strong. He is wearing a mostly white zip-up racing suit with the red Vodafone sign across his tummy. The words "Vodafone McLaren Mercedes" are written down his legs in silver capital letters. His chest is covered in sponsors, the colours ranging from yellow to black. His black racing gloves and boots stand out against the white of his suit. His helmet, obscuring his face, is the colours of his home town’s flag. Britain.
I imagine myself entering the picture, standing in front of this person. There, but not really there, as if I am watching a 4D movie.
As I look around I see chaos, everyone and everything moving in different directions like ants building up their colony. I can replay the scene before all this. When everyone was glued to their seats, daring to blink, as the cars, like the bulls in the cartoons, revving their engines and pawing the ground, come hurtling past. As fast as lightning, first the flash, then the noise. Breaking the barrier of the speed of sound!
Twenty four red-hot fires seeing who will be the first to devour the branch. In the last few laps, driver and car become one. One brain, one power, one machine. Pulling up to 7Gs at every corner until the final straight. The spectators at the edge of their seats with their hands on their heads waiting, watching, counting down the milliseconds as the cars, neck-and-neck, head towards the line.
The checked flag starts waving and pit crew members jump up and down screaming the name of their hero. As radios crackle team managers are congratulating their drivers on a well-driven race. The top three drive towards their places, first in the middle. They start getting out of their cars, back to where the picture was taken.
I can hear the click and see the flash, like thunder and lightning as the cameras snap pictures of the winning smile. The putrid smell of burning rubber still wafts in the air, the tyres blistering and bubbling from the heat of the charcoal tar. Imagine the taste of victory, sweet like honey.
Spectators in their thousands crowd around the podium. Millions all over the world turn their T.V.’s up. Commentators going crazy about that final dash for the line. Its trophy time.
The man in his white suit and British helmet walk towards the podium. He stops in front of a camera and puts up the famous "W" with his thumbs and forefingers. He then kisses the lens and keeps on walking.
This is my most favourite person in the world, racing in my most favourite sport in the world. As the trophy is about to be presented, “November first, 2009,” the presenter shouts over the microphone, “And…"
My dream is immediately shattered, my bubble just burst. I come back to reality to find myself sitting on the floor staring at the picture, my mom calling my name.
“And Jenson Button wins the title and claims the Formula 1 drivers championship,” I finish off.