Reasons Why Race Car Drivers Are Considered Real Athletes

Giancarlo Perlas April 20, 2023

In most cases, many people view race car driving as a hobby or a leisure activity and not as a sport. However, the activities involved are so far overwhelming as both mental and physical demands are in play. Skill, mental toughness, and physicality always play a key part when you are racing. There are additional things that racing drivers do, making them more of athletes.

Mercedes F1 driver Lewis Hamilton always prepares himself physically and mentally before each race. (Photo Source: Men’s Health)

As you explore the latest NBA odds,  we will discuss how race car drivers are in the category of athletes and some of the elements that make an athlete, as well as our view on F1 drivers.

Read ahead as we explore.

Race Car Drivers and Key Requirements

You have probably been on the racing line and felt the adrenaline while a race car passes by. Well, this happens more for the racing driver as they have a lot going on.

Initially, racing car drivers need excellent hand-eye coordination with top reaction times. They need to swiftly process information and react to situations as they drive at top speeds.

Usually, the stamina and endurance needed as the driver races at high speeds are significant. When a driver races for extended periods,  there is a risk of extreme heat which may lead to exhaustion, dehydration, and fatigue.

As such, a physically fit driver is able to race for success.

Mental agility and focus are athletic requirements that racing drivers should have.  They need to think fast and make split-second decisions in different situations. They also must assess the risks and other changing conditions on the road, which helps them to stay coordinated.

Mental toughness is critical for racing, as drivers need to stay calm and composed while facing adversity or danger on the track.

Apart from the physical and mental attributes above, high-level skill and technical knowledge are also crucial for racing drivers. They need to read and understand all the vehicle dynamics and ensure they relay the right information to the team members for winning.

The skill needs significant training, practice, and a lot of experience, which is what athletes do before taking part in events.

Why Race Car Drivers Need the Above Attributes

Physical Fitness

Athletes are required to be in the best physical form before they engage in sporting events. Similarly, racing drivers need to be healthy and physically fit.  They must be flexible,  have cardiovascular endurance, and possess good muscular strength.  This helps them to remain proficient when in competitive racing events.

The Best Skill

Drivers must be skilled when it comes to racing. A lot of movements with steering and legs occur while racings. This means that the top skill will help the driver coordinate everything with ease. With the best skill, the driver will always tackle the races with a high level of proficiency.

Mental Toughness

Being confident, remaining focused, and being resilient are some of the key things that not many players have. However, a good athlete has the above attributes.

A driver in the category must possess everything above to be considered tough mentally. This means that the driver can make informed decisions based on thinking.

They are able to remain tight when facing adversity. Drivers with stable mental toughness will always excel as the best athletes since they don’t rely on situations but ensure they learn and go through the situations strongly.

Enough Training

You probably have seen athletes train hard before they go on track for sports. Drivers also require consistency during training. They must master everything and then apply it for success on the track.

Through regular training, athletes are able to utilize the above attributes of skill and mental toughness even easier. They will also need to keep their physical fitness at its best. Drivers with good training will often excel as other athletes.

F1 Drivers

One fact about F1 drivers is that they are considered the fittest sportsmen in the world. Despite their cars reaching up to 320 km/hr, the drivers can make split-second decisions. They are also tough mentally, and despite the races taking 80- 120 minutes, they still remain calm and focused.


Finally, race car drivers are the top athletes in the world and always have a lot to do while on the track. The coordination and all the mental activities going through their mind makes them tight. They also engage in a lot of physical movements with their neck, legs, eyes, and ears, making them physically fit, mentally tough, and with a lot of skill. All of the above requires training.

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About Author

Giancarlo Perlas

Giancarlo Perlas is an economist by profession with a career spanning nearly two decades. His professional journey has seen him assume vital roles in various government and private organizations, particularly in the blockchain and cryptocurrency sectors. Alongside his civic and corporate pursuits is his love for cars, particularly those made by Mercedes-Benz. In 2012, he found himself with like-minded individuals within BenzInsider. From then on, he used the platform as a way to share his passion with the automotive community. Follow his Facebook page at, X (formerly Twitter) @giancarloperlas, and IG @benzinsider. View all posts by Giancarlo Perlas →

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