What is it like to be a race car driver?

The Thrill Behind The Wheel

As the rubber hits the asphalt there is a jolt of adrenaline that surges through every fibre of your being. Literally encapsulated within a metal cage, outfitted with more buttons and knobs than your latest gaming console, gazing down a stretch of track that blurs on either side; you, my friend, are in the driver's seat of a race car. Speeding faster than a cheetah can sprint, faster than our Aussie kangaroo can jump, a race car driver literally races against time, pushing human and mechanical limits for that coveted gold-and-black chequered flag.

Being a race car driver is not just about speed, it's more like composing a symphony. The roaring engine, the screeching of tyres, the adrenaline rush, the dripping sweat - every element comes together to form the perfect harmony. Navigating the beast of a machine requires fine motor skills and split-second decision-making, all while maintaining an unfathomable calm amidst the chaos. Akin to a game of human chess, it’s an exhilarating, dangerous, and unpredictable adventure!

Taming The Mechanical Beast

Alright, alright, I can hear you chomping at the bit, eager to know more about the ride itself. So let's cut to the chase. Interestingly, a race car is not a machine you can simply jump into and drive off into the sunset. Far from it, in fact. The race car is a wild, untamed beast—dauting yet inviting. Yet by learning the intricacies of the machine, understanding its nuances and quirks, and ultimately taming it, the driver really becomes one with it.

The art of handling a vehicle at such breakneck speeds isn’t something learned overnight, no sirree. It involves understanding the mechanics of the car, knowing when to push hard, when to ease back, when to make that daring overtake, and when to play it safe. It’s really a game of strategy, timing, and everything in between. As you get more and more comfortable within the cockpit, the boundaries between man and machine begin to blur, enabling the total synchronisation needed to conquer the track.

The Gruelling Physical and Mental Game

And boy oh boy, is it a physically and mentally gruelling endeavour! Imagine the G-force pulling at your body as you corner at high speed, the intense concentration needed to strategise each manoeuvre, your heart racing in tune with the revving engine. Being a race car driver requires nothing short of peak physical and mental fitness - it's a sport in every sense of the word!

We often take our daily drives down to the supermarket lightly, but being in a race car for several hours is energetically comparable to running a marathon at full-tilt. Every muscle in the body is engaged as the driver battles the gigantic force acting against them. In fact, during a race, drivers may lose up to 2-3 kilograms of body weight. Talk about a workout!

Living Life in the Fast Lane Once the Helmet Comes Off

Now, being a race car driver isn't all about burning rubber and chequered flags. Nope. There's a whole different side to the story once the helmet comes off. It's a life of constant travel, numerous media engagements, endless autographs and, not to forget, the consistent pressure to perform. Yet, amidst the whirlwind of activities, it's equally important to ensure that they stay grounded and maintain a balance between racing and family life.

As for me, a thrilling brush with professional race car driving was when I got the chance to test drive a fully-equipped monster on four wheels while visiting the Barbagallo Raceway outside Perth. The sheer power of the vehicle left me breathless, and the exhilaration is something I've struggled to replicate since.

Being a professional race car driver definitely isn't for the faint-hearted. It's for the brave, the tenacious, the individuals who crave that split second of glory after beating everyone else to the finish line.


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