Saturday, March 2, 2024

Formula 1: what it takes to be a driver





Elite-level racing is not just a question of driving around a track, and Formula 1 drivers need a variety of skills to succeed. Controlling a vehicle that is travelling at more than two hundred miles per hour is difficult, dangerous, and requires significant focus and determination.

There are plenty of skills that F1 drivers need to demonstrate in order to reach the top of their game, including:

Commitment

Many F1 drivers start their careers by racing go-karts and most have dreamed of a career in Formula 1 for years. The most successful racers are those that are truly committed to their sport, racing from a young age and working their way through the various championships to prove themselves on the track in the larger competitions.

Knowledge

From understanding the impact of drag on a car to negotiating endorsement deals and contracts, F1 drivers may have a team around them, but they are ultimately responsible for their own careers. This requires significant knowledge of everything from the way tires feel when they are properly inflated to the calculations that determine who starts in which position on race day.

Strength

While you may not need to be fantastically strong to survive your commute to work, F1 driving is completely different from any other driving and requires significant strength to maintain control of the car. The g-forces involved in accelerating, braking, and cornering in an F1 car mean that drivers need incredibly strong necks, good posture and upper body strength, and excellent cardiovascular health.

Excellent decision making

Racing drivers need to be able to react quickly to anything that comes their way, from competitors trying to keep them off the top spot to mechanical malfunctions. F1 drivers have to be able to assess a situation and make a quick decision about the best course of action to keep them safe and win the race.

Confidence

When you are taking a corner at speed, or overtaking on a straight, you need to be absolutely sure that you have judged everything correctly. Believing in your abilities is one of the most important parts of being a racing driver as the margins for error are so small that even the slightest hesitation could lose a race or even cause an accident.

Recovery time

Formula 1 drivers need to be able to bounce back after a race, allowing their bodies to recover from the intense pressure placed on them by the rigours of racing. The quicker the recovery time, the more efficient the driver can be and the more races they can enter.

Disciplined

Drivers have to conform to a number of strict rules, from rigid weight limits needed to compete to vehicles that need to conform to the regulations of the sport. Everything has to be just right, so F1 teams use high-quality suppliers for items such as Advanti racing wheels, not to mention the very best protective clothing and headwear.

The top Formula 1 drivers have to be focused and dedicated to their sport and there are plenty of things that can help them to succeed, Those that begin young often have racing in their veins, and Lewis Hamilton is a prime example of a driver that followed the traditional path to Formula 1.

Oscar Piastri is famous for racing remote control cars in his spare time after his dad bought him one when he was six or seven. The enthusiasm with which he embraced RC racing was a good indicator of his approach on the race track and he believes his technical driving skill is borne of his early years practising with the RC car.

There are so many things that make Formula 1 drivers special, it would be hard to pick which is the most important. As a sport, each driver needs the combination of self-belief and exceptional skill that make the most accomplished drivers so successful.

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The post Formula 1: what it takes to be a driver appeared first on Paddock Magazine.

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