26 June 2007

physical demands on F1 drivers

Brains and brawn perfect formula for fastest men@The Australian

To control a Renault, Ferrari or Toyota at speeds in excess of 300kph around Albert Park, a driver needs four physical attributes.

The first is an aerobic capacity that enables him to perform for one hour and 40 minutes while his heart is pounding at about 180 beats per minute. David Coulthard, the oldest man on the Albert Park grid, has a resting rate of about 40 beats per minute, a figure normally associated with endurance cyclists and runners.

The second is neck strength, to withstand up to 25kg of sideways force, on every corner, through a 58-lap race. The third is sufficient strength through the arms and chest to control the wheel. The fourth is the leg power to provide 80kg downward pressure each time you brake.

Beyond this, however, a driver needs something else.

"It is not only the physical stress but the brain stress," Ceccarelli explained. "A driver's brain has to run faster than his car, which is more than 300kmh, with no rest. That makes this sport very difficult."

1 comment:

Ross Tucker and Jonathan Dugas said...

Hey Tai

It's Ross here, I have the Science of Sport Blog. I'm quite interested in your post on the demands on F1 Drivers. It's something I was thinking of doing a post on sometime as well - at Science of Sport, we try to find the current sports events and then interpret them with a scientific view.

But instead of writing my own post, I was wondering if perhaps you would like to write a guest article for us? And perhaps we could write a guest article for you as well? You can think of anything that we can write for you, in return for an article on F1, with a bit more detail.

What do you thinkg? It might give us both a bit of traffic...

Ross Tucker