George Russell, Mercedes, Yas Marina

Russell’s eyes were “fully bloodshot” after first F1 test

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In the round-up: George Russell says he was amazed by the demands on his body when he first tested an F1 car.

What they say

Russell spoke to the BBC about his first experience testing an F1 car:

It was incredibly fast. It was honestly mind-blowing. I think the first time I drove I jumped from a Formula Three car to an F1 car and it was like my mind couldn’t keep up with the speed was the initial feeling.

The braking, we’re going into a corner at 200 miles an hour and you’re braking 100 metres before the corner, which was just absolutely bonkers. And my eyes couldn’t keep up.

Actually after my first-ever day in an F1 car my eyes were fully bloodshot and I think that was just from the forces. And that happened for the first three days I ever did, and the end of the day in my eyes were fully bloodshot.

So it’s just incredible. Your body takes time to get used to those horses. I’m fully used to it now but it was mind-blowing.

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Comment of the day

Does F1 really need lighter cars to produce better racing?

Just look at the best times for IndyCars (or rather CART at the time) in the 90′. Those cars were heavy (and pretty large too) because they didn’t use all that fancy materials, but man were they fast. And wow was the racing great.

Sure, lowering weight makes the cars more nimble. And yes, that is a good thing for race cars. But the question really is about priorities. Putting in more complicated structures and more expensive materials to lower weight really is pretty far down on my list of things to do

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 18 comments on “Russell’s eyes were “fully bloodshot” after first F1 test”

    1. Changing the weight limit isn’t just about materials. Technology and understanding of packaging and thermal requirements mean equipment naturally gets better and more efficient over time.

      The batteries that came in when KERS first entered in F1 are now door stops if they haven’t been recycled. So I think having a lower weight limit will just mean a challenge to make things lighter with existing materials.

      Materials are already regulated in F1, particularly in engines.

      1. So do you think that better battery technology is the key to weight reduction, say with the introduction of new materials for batteries, or are batteries themselves the problem? The team that jumps to lighter batteries will have an advantage that is also relevant to road car technology. I am interested in any views…

        1. @ferrox-glideh there is a mandated minimum weight for the batteries, so there is no real advantage to gain there.

          1. yeah, which was a choice made for cost reasons as far as I know.

          2. @scottie @ferrox-glideh @bascb

            It would be good if they can get a good handle on the budget caps, and then start to relinquish some of the cost-saving measures in place. If a team is able to develop new materials/technologies/methods whatever withing the $150-175M budget cap, then more power to them.

            Cost saving regulations make no sense when there’s an over-arching cost-saving regulation. It should be opened up to allow more freedom, so long it’s all within budget.

            1. Makes sense, I agree

            2. I hope they do get towards that model @justrhysism, since it allows for real clever engineering to shine. But it will probably take some time.

              First they will have to see how they manage to work with the budget cap – say a year or two. Then they have to discuss regulations, which could take anywhere from a year to a decade in F1 (I sure hope it won’t, but if the pressure is off by then, who knows). So it could be that we see this only when F1 gets in a really tight spot in about a decade when the era of ICE-engines sings its swansong in many markets.

          3. Sorry, didn’t know of the battery weight regulation.

            Yeah, I think the batteries of today versus those that first came in early 2010’s will be far more effective to be honest. The start of all the weight gains was this new battery tech, and I think letting them work on making existing tech lighter will be a big step to improve the cars.

            1. I appreciate and agree with your analysis.

    2. The COTD is/was actually a reply to me concerning the matter in the previous round-up, but I agree.

      Should the Austrian GP not take place on its slot, it’d (probably) get called off altogether for this year based on the previous words of being unwilling to change the date.

      1. Something I forgot to add: On this day in F1: The 2015 Chinese GP took place, a race in which Nico Rosberg complained about his race-winning teammate’s driving due to Seb’s closeness giving a potential chance for attempting an undercut against him.

      2. It was indeed @jerejj!

    3. RIP Stirling Moss.
      A true legend of the sport if ever there was one

    4. Who knew Button could press a button?

    5. So glad Russell got used to those horses.

      1. I wonder if they’ll all have to reacclimatise after all this time of. Can’t train eyeballs even if you can train other body parts.

    6. COTD confuses lack of sophisticated aero with lower minimum weigths. F1 racing was better in the nineties too. Not because of the lower weight (around 500kg for the car).

      1. Comment confuses things there (something of a thing for you it seems). Nobody mentioned that the weight was the reason why racing was better. Just that the racing can be really good with heavy cars too.
        In F1 the racing in the 90’s was not better than it is currently. Just go and look at those older races. The top 2-3 finishing with laps between them, and several laps ahead of the competition wasn’t all that uncommon. And when we got refuelling, that was exciting for interesting strategies for about 2 season before it became a “been there, done that” repeat of the same moves.

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