Lando Norris told to stop whining

McLaren driver Lando Norris, who has excelled in 2023, has been told to stop complaining.

Former Formula 1 drivers Gerhard Berger and Christian Danner have raised concerns regarding the physical conditioning of current drivers in light of the health issues faced during the Qatar Grand Prix. 

The extreme heat and humidity took a toll on the competitors, leading to medical problems for several racers. 

Berger and Danner, alongside other experts, have questioned whether the drivers’ training regimen, with a focus on aesthetics like “six-pack abs,” might be inadequate for the extreme conditions they encounter.

The Qatar Grand Prix, a gruelling 56-lap race in sweltering conditions, left a trail of health issues in its wake. 

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Logan Sargeant retired due to intense dehydration, Esteban Ocon experienced vomiting in his helmet, and Lance Stroll even passed out while behind the wheel. 

These incidents have prompted drivers to voice their concerns about the safety and well-being of competitors in such demanding races.

One of the drivers, Lando Norris, went as far as describing the conditions as “dangerous.”

In response to these concerns, the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), the governing body of motorsport, has promised to address the situation. 

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The FIA’s statement indicated, “A number of measures will be discussed at the upcoming medical commission meeting in Paris. 

Measures may include guidance for competitors, research into modifications for more efficient airflow in the cockpit, and recommendations for changes to the calendar to align with acceptable climatic conditions, amongst others.”

However, not everyone agrees with the FIA’s approach. Former F1 race driver Martin Brundle dismissed the concerns as a “weak view.” 

He argued that extreme conditions like those in Qatar and rainy races are what showcase the drivers as the elite athletes they are.

Berger shared a similar sentiment, suggesting that better physical fitness would prevent such health issues. 

He stated, “I think it’s simply a question of fitness. If you’re really fit, you won’t get sick. 

“It’s a fitness problem, it’s a circulatory issue. 

“If you ask Verstappen, he didn’t get sick. 

“Not even in these temperatures.” 

However, even Max Verstappen, who didn’t fall ill, acknowledged the intense heat of the race.

Christian Danner, another former F1 driver, advised a different approach to training. 

He recommended drivers engage in cross-country skiing during the winter months and incorporate training in a sauna rather than just focusing on developing “six-pack abs” in the gym. 

Danner emphasised that drivers can train specifically for these conditions, making it essential to adapt their fitness regimens accordingly.

Both Berger and Danner acknowledge their own past experiences as F1 drivers. Berger humorously recollected his own struggles due to a lack of fitness, including an incident in Detroit where a fellow driver’s head was spinning around during the race. 

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Danner chimed in, saying, “Sorry, but in my opinion, it wasn’t too much of a surprise that the temperatures are high in Qatar. 

“It can’t be that the drivers aren’t trained well enough. I think they may have been trained incorrectly. 

“But you can train for such conditions! You can go to the sauna, put the bike down and ride on it.”