The Scrutineering Bay is Badger’s way of taking a hot Grand Prix racing topic and getting people from the Sett involved to put their opinions across. From predicting races, arguing stewards decisions to just deciding who was/is/will be the best, anything is fair game!

Don’t you just hate a boring Grand Prix? Although 2011 has produced a sequence of great races, Sunday’s event in Valencia – or non-event, as some papers are billing it – didn’t live up to it’s predecessors in terms of excitement or tension. So, it’s worth asking:

“Did anything exciting happen in Valencia?”

This week’s gaggle of Badger writers include myself, Craig Normansell, Jimmy Von Weeks and starting everything off, Benson Jammichello;

Nothing exciting happened in Valencia. Nothing at all.

It was by far the worst race this season and hopefully won’t be repeated any time soon. It’s those kind of races that cause casual fans who haven’t already fully bought into the sport to abondon ship, which is what makes the decision to extend the track’s contract for another five years only last year seem so bewildering. People watch F1 for entertainment – it’s a show and needs to have some level of excitement, of energy or even, god forbid, some uncertainty.

It’s very rare that I give up on a race. Very rare. However, had I been watching at home, rather than at the rather excellent Johnnie Walker event, I would have gone and done something else. My time is better spent than watching the sporting equivalent of paint dry; never had an F1 drinking game seemed like such a good idea.

I don’t think it’s even that Canada was really good; Valencia was wretched by anyone’s standards of grand prix racing. Get rid of it. Now. My boredom threshold is only so high.

Do you agree with Benson? Was it like paint drying?

Next up is Jimmy:

Whilst Valencia was unquestionably the least interesting race of 2011 that isn’t to say there was nothing to take note of at the Spanish circuit. Aside from Formula One cars driving at high speed between concrete walls – which is always worth watching – we had a few other titbits.

Lewis Hamilton arguing with his pitwall over the radio was a highlight: “I can’t go any slower” is surely one of the soundbites of the 2011 campaign. Then there was Jamie Alguersuari once again proving that dropping out in Q1 is a solid way to score points – it’s now happened in five of this year’s eight races – and, if on-track events don’t float your boat, we also had Mike Gascoyne enjoying time on his yacht, Belle Silvi, displaying both his nautical skills and his shoulder-covering tattoos. He looked like a Hell’s Angel cross with a rottweiler.

But I’m scraping the barrel a little. Valencia 2011 was dull, as I imagine Valencia 2012 will be. Roll on Silverstone; roll on new venue for the European GP.

And finally, my go:

It’s easy to say the European Grand Prix was boring – in comparison to every other race this season, it was a downright procession – but it served a purpose. Yes, it wasn’t exciting, but what it did do was show the world what the pecking order of Formula One is this season. Surely that’s an achievement in itself?

Valencia is now the new Hockenheim, before it was neutered by the FIA. All that track did was rank the cars in terms of pure horsepower, and you got the “Noah’s Ark” grid that made a non-triumphant return on Saturday in Spain. Now, each team knows where it is in terms of relative pace from the Red Bulls, and know where their nearest rivals are.

It was a good race in that regard. Seriously. Other than that, it was nothing more than a by the numbers Grand Prix reminiscent of the early 2000’s. I know the in thing is to be a bit retro these days, but not when it comes to entertaining F1 fans, thank you very much.

So, what do you think? Was Valencia an absolute bore-fest or a by the numbers race that still had the occasional tidbit to add to the history books? Let us know you views in the comments below.

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