And you thought the rules of golf were complicated

I’ve been following the Formula 1 end of season championship furore with some interest. It appears that there is some dubiety about the result of the final race in Abu Dhabi where Max Verstappen overtook Sir Lewis Hamilton on the final lap to win the coveted Drivers’ Championship for the first time.

In a nutshell this is what happened. With 5 laps to go Sir Lewis was 19 seconds ahead and there were cars between him and Max, but then Nicholas Lafiti crashed his Williams car and a safety car had to come out until it was deemed safe to restart the race, if at all. The problem then arose as the course director, Michael Masi, changed his decision about the 5 intervening cars. First not but then allowing them to un-lap themselves. Ultimately this meant that the 19 second gap disappeared and it was basically a sudden death race over 1 lap to decide the championship. Now Sir Lewis was in front, but he didn’t have fresh tyres like Max, who had gone for bust and made the crucial change. So he was a bit like Tom Watson going into the 2009 Turnberry Open sudden death play-off against a younger Stewart Cink after a gruelling four days of slogging it out. Tyred out.

The parallel is perfect actually, for it became a sudden death situation if I ever saw a sudden death situation.

Fair? Hmm! Debatable.

But what 14 million viewers wanted to see? Yes, and a resounding yes.

For the regulations allow the course director to use his discretion and as Michael Masi pointed out to a very disgruntled Mercedes boss, Toto Wolff, ‘this is a car race’.

You can’t really argue with that one.

And indeed, as the boss of Team Mercedes, old Toto should have known that one. It’s the moto’s Toto.

Well I’m playing on the Old today at 12.30. Probably the last time this year. I must have played it about thirty times this season. My golf is as wayward as ever though. Albeit I had a bit of an enlightened moment on the practice area last week when I started my swing from three quarters the way up. This made sure I had a straight left arm and square club face and may be the way forward? We shall see. I can’t do takeaways (well perhaps a Kebab Mahal if pushed).

Next year promises to be very interesting as I’m back into my old club Mortonhall in Edinburgh and I will be juggling a bit of work at Dean Banks at The Pompadour, a bit of golf around St Andrews and a few other projects which I shall reveal nearer the time.

I did have a pretty crazy dream about Mortonhall last night though. A hazy mix of old faces alongside the new changed modern dynamic that is now Mortonhall Golf Club and a very forthright lady who I remembered from telling me off for not wearing my mask at the club last year. A fair point she indeed had, but I left primary 2 a few moons ago my dear.

Of course, the irrepressible clubmaster David Henderson was there in full flow, a butler who looked like Leonardo di Capriccio, a new tip-top drinking den somewhere near the first tee, a lot of very critical looking faces, a taxi for McLaren and the most kindly chap from Elie who looked like our Andy Bubbles, the characterful Irish sommelier at The Pomp.

All pretty rum stuff all said, apart from a few unrecognisable missed calls on the old phone and the taxi for McLaren of course.

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