Originally posted on A Former F1 Doc Writes:
Nürburgring, watching tennis before a session
It’s 1992. Summer, but it’s cool enough in the Ardennes morning to be happy to put on the long underwear and overalls. Now we’re sitting over that first, anticipation-laced coffee:
“Yes old boy?”
“Do you think it’d be ok if I called you Sid?”
A big grin. “You know, the tramps sleeping under the stairs of my hospital call me Sid. Don’t see why you couldn’t.”
There. That was easy. Only took two years.
Although I was a lifelong fan of Formula 1, I’d never heard of Sid Watkins when the Chief Medical Officer at Spa-Francorchamps decided to make me the “local guy”, riding in the back of Sid’s FIA Medical Car in 1990. I was a 35 year-old anaesthetist, and had been told, by everyone involved, how important, imposing, and difficult the English gent was.
We found some common ground. Not difficult…
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