Driver fitness | FerrariChat

Driver fitness

Discussion in 'Other Racing' started by 007, Feb 6, 2004.

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Do you keep fit for racing?

  1. In the gym every day

  2. Sometimes, will train harder prior to a race event

  3. Rarely work on fitness at all.

  4. Vintage era enduro race driver, No gym or fitness plan, just a bottle of Brandy and a cigar.

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  1. 007

    007 Guest

    Feb 18, 2003
    Full Name:
    We hear a lot from the major racing sreies, F-1, IRL, CART, NASCAR ALMS etc., how driver fitness is so important. Just curious who here as an amatuer or semi-pro race driver keeps a physical fitness routine for the benefit of thier racing.


    Aug 20, 2001
    East Coast
    Full Name:
    Jon K.
    Being an average joe amateur racer I am on no way qualified to speak of the top rungs but I do know that the added weight of 20 pounds (overweight) and being a bit out of shape greatly affected my performance in a 45 minute sprint race. On a 2.5 mile track it was worth about a second.

    Where I noticed it most was towards the end of the race where my lap times were going up by a few thenths here and there because I was tired and making mistakes.

    I think one of the reasons MS is still winning is his fitness level. He's about as fit as the youngsters are maybe even more so.

    The harsh nature of what the body must endure in professional racing is something non-racers can't understand.

    I am more tired after a 45 minute sprint race then a two day track event. Why? In a race your adreneline is at 100% max the entire time. You are totally focused and driving flatout at every corner, you heart is beating at 180-200 beats per minute and it's rare you can relax for even a moment if you are running up front.

    After a 45 minute sprint race I am drained.

    I can only imagine what it must be like to drive like that for 2 hours in an F1 car.

    FYI: At LeMans in 2000 Allan McNish drove two and half stints in the Audi R8 LMP car in 98 degree temperatures and it was reported his water bottle system broke 20 minutes into the 3 1/2 hour stint.

    An ordinary person or even an ordinary racer would have been pulled out of the car in a comatose state after just one hour and he got out after 3 1/2 hours only to run another stint 4 hours later.


    Jon P. Kofod
  3. 62 250 GTO

    62 250 GTO F1 Veteran

    Jan 9, 2004
    Nova Scotia Canada
    Full Name:
    I broke my back. I either work out or sit on the couch forever.
  4. tifosi12

    tifosi12 Four Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Oct 3, 2002
    @ the wheel
    Full Name:
    My motivation for trying to keep in shape is not about racing, but to make it into my 308...It's an age thing.
  5. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
    Staff Member Admin Miami 2018 Owner

    Dec 1, 2000
    Southlake, TX
    Full Name:
    Rob Lay
    I don't think I'm a racer that works out because of it. I think I'm a racer and also a triathlete, just happens that being a triathlete helps me as a racer. I wish it was the other way around... being at the race track all weekend eating at the grill cranking my back around working on the car and being too tired to workout race weekends doesn't help my conditioning any.

    Before came along I was a serious age group triathlete that went to a couple of the national championships and participated in a national series. Then one day I found autocross and then club racing, I asked myself why be in pain working out and in the race when I get an even bigger competitive fix from racing. No pain during the week required!

    I'm now trying to find a balance between racing and being healthy, I don't have the same competitive goals with triathlon I did before. I specialized in sprint triathlons. This year I'm doing my first tri longer than Olympic distance in September. It's a half-ironman (1.2 miles swim, 56 miles bike, and 13.1 miles run) and hopefully in a couple years I'll do my first full ironman.

    Doing a 50 minute car race with 120 degree track surface temperatures in a thick driving suit is not easy, but after doing several marathons, 100 mile bike races, and Olympic distance triathlons it doesn't phase me too much.

    When the body needs extra blood and attention to keep you cool, then it takes blood that could be going to your head (where you really need it racing). Being in shape allows your body to be more efficient and handle extreme conditions easier, thus not taking away from much needed "brain power".

    However, I have to admit those times when the brain power gets a little low for yourself and everyone around you makes the best videos later to show! :D
  6. Hubert

    Hubert F1 Rookie

    Jan 3, 2002
    The Left Coast
    I'm in the gym 5-6 days/week.
    My routine is 60-75 minutes of weights, then 60 minutes swimming laps in a 25m pool.
    Sometime I add an 8 mile mountain bike ride on the weekends, or on my rotating "off" days.
  7. ferrari_kid

    ferrari_kid Formula Junior

    Jul 5, 2003
    i've heard about the training routines that F1 drivers have to go through, but i don't hear as much about training in other types of racing. i know for open wheel racing there are a lot more g forces to deal with, which is why they need to be fit.

    has anyone heard of the workout routine for closed cockpit racing? nascar racing maybe?
  8. beast

    beast F1 World Champ

    May 31, 2003
    Lewisville, TX
    Full Name:
    Rob Guess
    Drinking a 12 pack and chasing your sister into the bedroom :D

    WILLIAM H Three Time F1 World Champ

    Nov 1, 2003
    Victory Circle
    Full Name:
    endurance is very important. I drive almost every weekend in the summer and 30 minutes in a racing suit & helmet pushing a fast powerful car around the track is a serious workout. If you dont have the endurance you''ll get tired very fast. I also work on my neck & forearms & shoulders all of which see a lot of use. The trapezius muscles are always very tense after a day on the track.

    I get to the gym 3- 5 days a week, whenever I can during law school & I try to get on my excercise bike 40 min a day every day if possible. I would run but my back is messed up from a ski injury which running aggravates

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