Motorsport is one of the most adrenaline-fueled sports on the planet. The sheer thrill of competing at speeds that drivers on the road can only ever imagine is undeniable. A high risk versus high reward venture at the highest level. It has been the hallmark of Michael Schumacher, Ayrton Senna, and Lewis Hamilton, to name a few of the craft’s legends. Formula One is the epitome of open-wheel racing and certainly one of the most competitive. Each year, only 20 drivers in 10 teams make their way to the 21 circuits across the world. With the stakes indisputably high, here is what it takes to ultimately make a living and fulfill your ambition at the very top of Formula One.
What It Takes to Enter into Formula One Racing?
Formula Perhaps the most unspoken requirement of getting into racing is that you have and need to breathe, eat, and sleep motorsport. Unsurprisingly, if you are aspiring to be a race driver, there are no academic requirements expected of you. Kimi Raikkonen, the current race driver for Alfa Romeo Racing and the 2007 Formula One world champion, once conceded himself that school was beyond doubt a hefty challenge for him. Mostly, potential drivers start from karting at a young age of 7-8 years. At this level, all you need to do is to own a go-kart, and all the necessary provisions then complete an assessment at a kart-racing school. From there, you will scale up the age divisions until the age of 16 years, where you earn senior status. At this point, you are eligible to compete in Formula Three to One cars.
Making it to this level is no mean feat either. It requires extensive and intensive training. Young drivers ideally join racing clubs with academies that nurture promising talents into world-class stars. Through rigorous and consistent training, hand-in-hand with colossal hard work, the potential is nurtured and developed into highly skilled drivers on the track. A lot of sacrifices are made along the way to reach the apex of the sport. Generally, you will find that most top drivers missed out on some stages of social development, especially having an outgoing childhood or stable social interaction. In some cases, some may have also compromised their education, sometimes relying on a professional essay writer for school work, to pursue their dream.
Fortunately for the aspiring drivers, Formula One does not have a structured progression career-wise. A top-class racing aptitude and sheer dedication will have you established on the international scene racing with the very best, regardless of the age factor.
What Skills Are Required of a Formula One Racing Driver?
Like any other form of racing, the most basic and essential skills a racing driver needs are incredible car control, balance, racing craft, situational awareness, engineering competence, and a great deal of discipline. Patience is also key to achieving success in any field. Formula One cars are marvels of engineering, continually pushing the limits through trials and errors. A great driver needs to learn how to handle and control the car through the limits, push a bit too far in some instances, yet still reel the car back into the competition.
Racecraft as a skill enables the driver to know how to plan and execute moves during a race, including handling the competitive pressure that comes with it. It is critical to understand when to make an overtake when to slow down and speed up, how to manage tires, or how to maximize advantages. This includes psychological advantages you may possess over your opponents. A keen sense, preferably intuitive, of the risk and return, is also vital for successful racing. After all, motorsport does pose a real risk of serious harm to the drivers. Thus, concentration and unwavering focus are requisite for professional drivers. This, additionally, assures the driver that they can always be primed to react in the fastest time possible. After all, Formula One is a sport where milliseconds set participants apart.
Furthermore, equally integral, a successful driver has to be a team player. Despite the car just having one driver, the sport is predominantly team effort. Behind the cars are complex teams of team bosses, race engineers, mechanics, pit-stop crews, and much more, all working together for the race victories. Therefore, a great driver should be able to give his best at all times. Not just for himself but also for the rest of the team behind the scenes that ensure the car is as easy as possible to drive, thus easier to win.
Becoming a Formula One driver is an incredibly exciting prospect. One that requires much more, one that equally offers a lot more. Do not expect to be at the top of the mountain, just as soon as you start the climb. But first, you have to finish.