Eddie Irvine Q & A - His answers!
1. Mark Osland: You have always been outspoken, and for all the right reasons! You could see some interviewers cringe with fear when talking to you, but is there anything you really regret saying/doing during your F1 career?
Eddie Irvine (EI): I donít think so. I tell the truth as it is and how I see it. Saying things just because they are politically incorrect will come back and haunt you. You have to be honest. Iím not saying I was always right, but I always said what I felt was right.
2. Schoey: What are you up to nowadays? Do you still own a boat and helicopter?
EI: Iím doing lots of property work at the moment. I own eight boats, no helicopter, though I do own an aeroplane.
3. Gareth Williams: You had a fantastic career as an F1 driver. During that time, which track was your favourite and why? And which race will you always remember as your greatest?
EI: Monaco. Itís not designed; itís a street circuit so there are so many imperfections with the track that you needed to conquer. Itís definitely the best track.
My best race was the Hungarian Grand Prix for Jaguar. I broke down so there was no result, but I drove every lap as well as I could and I have never driven as well as I did during that race. Thatís what people donít realise about racing drivers, itís not just about the result, itís about the way you drive the car on the track. I always judge and critique my driving more than anyone else, so for me, that was my best race.
4. Jill Darby: A relative of mine is part of the Force India team. How do you rate the teamís chances of becoming a major player in F1?
EI: I know the Force India team pretty well. As a small team they do an amazing job. Andy Stevenson was my former mechanic and he is the team manager at Force India. He does a great job. To become a major player in F1 you need to have continuity, hire the right people and give them time to develop.
5. Heidi_2012: If you had a free choice in today's F1 race - which driver's seat would you like to be in? And why?
EI: I wouldnít. Itís too much hard work. People donít realise that itís a really stressful job. Itís time consuming and demoralising unless you are in the best car.
6. Gerard Harris: What car would you buy next? What's your favourite classic car?
EI: I only have one car which is an old Mercedes 300 CE (circa 1990). In Miami I use a scooter and in the Bahamas I use a boat. The only cars I would buy are a Jensen Interceptor or a Jaguar E-Type.
7. RAC: Have you had any embarrassing breakdowns in a car?
EI: My Ferrari GTO broke down in London and wouldnít start. I had to get passersby to push me Ė that was embarrassing. Iím a decent mechanic though, so I can normally sort out a problem with a car.
8. RAC: What was the first car you ever owned?
EI: A Lotus Elan. It was a piece of junk but I loved it. It was beautiful. Iíd love to buy another one now but they are tiny.
9. RAC: What do you like to listen to while you are behind the wheel?
EI: I like Van Morrison, Thin Lizzy, Guns N' Roses, ACDC.
10. RAC: What is your favourite road to drive on in the world?
EI: It has to be the road around Strangford Lough in Northern Ireland [between the villages of Strangford and Portaferry]. Itís a stunning road to drive on and has amazing views of the Lough.