If you cast the 2016 grid…


There was a lot of news around at the Italian GP. Apart from the extremely good news that F1 might be sold to someone who cared about the sport’s future, and the more downbeat news that Felipe and Jenson wouldn’t be driving next year, there was news that a new Ronnie Peterson film was being made.

That information chimed in perfectly with Andrew Davies’s assertion a couple of weeks back that F1 leans heavily on its dangerous, glamorous past. F1 films, he said, were only made about fatal or life-threatening incidents. And before you know it, the film-makers are heading off to Monza to recreate (presumably) Ronnie’s fatal Italian GP, where he had a serious-but-survivable accident and died of complications that set in through poor treatment.

Those old enough to remember James Hunt’s regular BBC commentary rants about Riccardo Patrese will be interested to see how Patrese’s involvement in the accident will be handled. Hunt always blamed him – it was right at the start of Riccardo’s career, when he was a little bit wild – and wasn’t shy about letting people know.

It’s very unlikely that filmmakers will be reconstructing the events of the 2016 season. But if they did, who would play who? Well, for a start Leonardo DiCaprio is a shoo-in for Nico Rosberg, and star of Homeland, Band of Brothers and Wolf Hall Damian Lewis would make a pretty good (if a little bit too old) stand-in for fellow-ginga Jenson Button.

We’ve assembled a cast list, but the good thing is, you can add your own underneath…

Kimi Raikkonen – Owen Wilson
Sebastian Vettel – James McAvoy
Toto Wolff – Javier Bardem, or the bloke who plays ‘The Hound’ in Game of Thrones
Paul Hembery – Ricky Gervaise
Fernando Alonso – Antonio Banderas
Helmut Marko – Christopher Lloyd ‘Doc’ from the Back to the Future movies
Bernie Ecclestone – Danny Devito
Felipe Massa – Andrew Scott (Moriarty in Sherlock)
Niki Lauda – a Galapagos tortoise
Christian Horner – Daniel Craig (money to the usual address please, Christian)
Jock Clear – Jason Statham (Ditto)
Charlie Whiting – Steve Martin (Ditto)
Ron Dennis – Richard Wilson (Victor Meldrew)
Maurizio Arrivabene – Robert De Niro
Daniel Ricciardo – Jason Biggs (American Pie)
Lewis Hamilton – someone uber-cool who needs to be at home with a jet set lifestyle in LA or Monaco, so obviously Richard Ayoade
Claire Williams – Jenna Coleman
Mercedes boss Dieter Zetsche – Sprocket the dog from Fraggle Rock

Frank Hopkinson