Eddie Irvine – Frequently Asked Questions – Version 2.0 19/07/2007
In no particular order:
1) So was he any good?
What do you mean was he any good? He was the best driver in Formula One. No one could touch him. What? Biased, me? Ok, I’ll try to be balanced. He is a good driver, but inconsistent. On his good days he is quick as anybody else out there, the trouble was that the F399 was hard for him to qualify well. He was probably one of the best starters in Formula One; And he came second in 1999 after all. The Jaguar years though were a bit of a disaster, Wikipedia has a good entry about what went wrong with the team.
2) What was all the fuss about what flag is on the podium?
Well, Northern Ireland had a bit of a Civil War from the late 1960's until the Good Friday Agreement Just under half the population wants to be part of Ireland (Nationalists), the other half want to remain part of the United Kingdom (Unionists). Each side follows their own flag, Irish Tricolour for Nationalists, Union Jack for Unionists. Eddie is Protestant, so in theory he is an Unionist. But he isn’t, he’s neutral, as is most of the people here. Now, he should because of his birthplace have a Union Jack flying, but because he had an Irish racing license the FIA decreed he should have a Tricolour flying. Which caused no end of trouble for his parents back home. Eddie himself wanted a neutral flag but in the end it was decided that the Union Jack and the Tricolour would be shown on alternate visits to the podium.
3) Is it true that he had a punch up with Senna?
Yes and no. On his first F1 race Eddie was lapped by Senna when Eddie was fighting for a position with Damon Hill. Senna slowed when he got to Hill so Eddie overtook Senna, about which Senna wasn’t happy about to say the least. After the race, egged on by Gerhard Berger and after having a few rare drinks of Schnapps, Aryton went down to the Jordan pit to remonstrate with Eddie. They had an argument and Eddie refused to see Aryton’s point of view, and as he was leaving Aryton threw a punch at Eddie, which apparently didn’t connect but Eddie fell off the table he was sitting on. They had started to make up just before Senna’s tragic death. A transcript of what happened can be found here.
4) Is he as good looking in real life?
I tend to get asked this a lot, and being a guy obviously I don’t have an opinion. But on the three times I have met him he was surrounded by girls so I guess the answer is yes.
5) I’m a bit kinky and I would love to buy a pair of Eddie’s sweaty race underpants.
Err. I don't know about that, but he used to dispose of old clothes of his at his friend’s Formula One shop in Belfast, but that has closed down. I suspect your best bet is eBay.co.uk .
6) Is there a fan club?
There were two, Exclusively Eddie Irvine & Eddie Irvine 365, both are now defunct as far as I know.
7) Is Eddie single?
He was complete tart, but no idea who he is dating at the moment.
8) What type of sunglasses did he wear. You know, the ones he never took off?
Thanks to some excellent detective work by Neil Bryce I can confirm that they are Oakley's.
9) He was crap, why on earth was he driving for Ferrari?
Well obviously I don’t believe he was crap. He was a good friend of Schumacher, which I believe was a first for any teammate of Michael’s, he got the job done well and he was popular with the head of Ferrari and FIAT. Plus he was cheap, which probably helped as well. But at the end of the day he was a very good driver, it's as simple as that.
10) You don’t have a Frequently Asked Question here that I want answered.
This FAQ mostly came from friends and family over the years. If you E-mail me a question I will do my best to answer it. And no, I don’t know his phone number.