Last year Duffy Sheardown – whose Red Star Chocolate company is one of only two bean to bar fine chocolate makers in the UK – challenged me to pick the winner of each race in the 2010 Formula 1 season. Remarkably, given Duffy’s motor racing background, I came out on top, winning the 19 race season at 10-7 (though the final result was 10-9).
The rules were that whovever’s ‘pick’ for each race came highest would win that race. For each race I won, Duffy would give me a bar of chocolate, and vice-versa. The idea of an overall winner only really came later, probably when I was ahead! Duffy graciously added a bonus to the overall prize, a trip to Autosport International at the NEC in the UK, in January this year.
I really know very little about motor racing, so it was quite a privilege to attend an event like this in the company of an industry insider. If Duffy achieves the same degree of insight into chocolate making, we can expect great things from Red Star in the future. To top it off, I was officially part of ‘Red Star Motor Racing’ for a day! (A totally real company, honest!)
Duffy and I both agreed we’d like to repeat the competition for 2011, but this time open it up to all comers to join in the fun. So for this year, we’ll be offering prizes of chocolate bars, a special Red Star selection and grand prizes of visits to Autosport International with Duffy and a visit to the Red Star Chocolate factory in Cleethorpes.
Alongside this we’ll continue our own personal vendettas as Duffy looks for revenge and the restoration of lost pride, and I try to ride my luck for another season.
Why on earth are we mixing fine chocolate and Formula 1, you might ask? It’s a good question without a sensible answer, all I can say is that it’s for absolutely no good reason apart from our own pleasure. We hope you get a kick out of it too.
So here goes with the rules for this year, which are subject to changes of mind by the stewards (us), a bit like the flexibility of a front wing in 2010.
For each race we’ll create a new post. Anyone can comment on the post and pick their call for race winner. This must be done BEFORE the Saturday qualifying session for each race. Entries after this date won’t be counted, but feel free to comment.
The prize will be a chocolate bar from Duffy, which will only be given for choosing the 1st place driver. In the event of more than one winner, names will be entered into a (Montecristi Ecuadorian) hat and three winners will be chosen.
Special rules will apply for Duffy & myself, we will alternate who gets first chance to pick the winner, as for last year. If Duffy wins, he gets a bar from me, if I win, I get one from him. If neither of us pick the race winner, we both go hunrgy,
Whoever makes the most correct calls for the winner of each race gets to be the overall champion for the season. The prize will be a visit to Duffy’s chocolate factory in Cleethorpes, England and a ticket to Autosport International next year at the NEC in Birmingham, accompanied by Duffy (and Martin if I’m invited!)
To qualify for this part of the competition, you must post your comments as a signed up member of Seventypercent.com. It’s free and easy to join, so why not take the plunge!
We’ll also be running a competition to guess the overall World Champion and Team Championship winners. Entries for this must be made before the 9th race, the British Grand Prix, which is 10 July. We’ll make a separate post for you to add your guesses. In the event of ties, a single winner will be drawn from a hat by a well know chocolate celebrity (when we’ve convinced one to take part in our little hour of madness).
Prize for guessing the 2011 Formula 1 World Drivers Champion: A selection of Duffy’s finest bars and a selection from Seventypercent.com. Minimum 10 bars.
Prize for guessing the 2011 Formula 1 World Team Champion: Two free tickets to a Chocolate and Love tasting of your choice in the winter, plus 5 bars to take away from the event.
Joining in with the competition is free, at your own risk and therefore hopefully not classed as gambling (except on your sanity). One clause though, we’ll only be shipping bars within the UK and you must make your own way to the Autosport International show or Duffy’s factory if you get lucky. (If you live outside the UK, we can ship your winnings in one go at the end of the season, assuming you’ve swept the board and if you pay the postage, unless we’re feeling in a good mood that day.)