Valtteri Bottas says he is getting too hot in the cockpit of his Mercedes since the team changed the colour of its drivers’ overalls from white to black.
Mercedes originally produced its usual white overalls for the 2020 season. It changed the colour when it introduced a new black ‘end racism’ livery for its cars.
However Bottas believes the colour change means the overalls now absorb more heat, leading to his discomfort in the race. “It was really hot in the car and I felt that since this year it’s been even hotter in the car,” he said.
“Obviously, we have changed the colour of the overalls and it’s known that black colour takes more of the heat, especially when there’s direct sun. I don’t know any numbers or facts how much it is actually black versus white in terms of temperature difference. But this year it’s been really hot in the car.
“Also there’s a new homologation this year for the overalls so they are thicker and the underwear is thicker. So I don’t know how much affect that has. But it was just so hot. So I said, guys, these overalls are way too hot. For sure white would be cooler in terms of temperature.”
Drivers typically lose body weight during races due to fluid loss. Bottas said he “lost three kilos in the race, which is quite a lot,” in Spain. “So that already can start to affect performance.
“I know that from the all the drivers I’m one of the fittest, so I can take it. But it’s never comfortable and there’s always things that we can improve.”
Mercedes has previously said their car is not running any hotter as a result of the livery change.
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2020 F1 season
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- Bottas vs Rosberg: Hamilton’s Mercedes team mates compared after 78 races each
- F1 revenues fell by $877 million in Covid-struck 2020 season
- Hamilton and Mercedes finally announce new deal for 2021 season
- F1 audience figures “strong” in 2020 despite dip in television viewers