F1 drivers can cope with hectic summer schedule

Sun, 2 July 2023, 09:00

Jul.2 (GMM) Formula 1 drivers say they can cope with the sport’s hectic modern calendars.

This weekend, the circus is in Austria – but F1 moves immediately on to Silverstone for the British GP before taking a single weekend’s break.

After that, though, more back-to-backs in Hungary and Spa will complete a period in which Formula 1 drivers contested no fewer than four races in just five weeks.

“The most difficult are these sprint races because all the sessions count,” Alpine’s Esteban Ocon told the Belgian broadcaster RTBF. “But rest is very important.

“You have to know how to manage between races – recover well, train and maintain a healthy lifestyle.”

Seven time world champion Lewis Hamilton agrees.

“The challenge is not only to manage the races, but also to combine it with the obligations that we have on the side,” said the Mercedes driver.

“I was in Germany on Wednesday and in Spain on Saturday for a commercial commitment,” Hamilton revealed. “And you have to train twice a day to do all this.

“Eating well, resting well, giving yourself mental rest is very difficult too, especially when you travel so much. So I try to take naps whenever I can.

“When everyone else is used to talking on the plane, I go to sleep,” he smiled.

F1’s oldest driver Fernando Alonso, however, said the situation is much more difficult for the sport’s harder working characters – like the mechanics.

“It’s a challenge,” he said of the back-to-back period F1 is in at the moment, “but we have all the comforts.

“We are taken care of, we have good hotels, good food and we get on the plane quickly so that by Sunday evening we are already at home.

“It’s a lot more stressful for the mechanics who have to prepare everything for the following weekend. It’s obviously an intense month for our sport but the drivers are lucky.”

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