Vergne 'hospitalised due to weight loss' – French media
6th April 2014, 11:25 at 11:25 am #255649
French media are quoting Jean-Eric Vergne saying he had to go to hospital after the Australian Grand Prix:
I weigh a lot heavier, so I started a diet this winter, but we come to certain limits that the body can no longer bear. fact, I was at the hospital between the Grand Prix of Australia Malaysia because of a lack of water and a bit of everything. I was just too weak.
With Adrian Sutil showing the lengths drivers are going to get the weight down because of the new rules, surely they need to look at bringing next year’s 10kg minimum weight increase forwards on safety grounds?
More on the weight issue:6th April 2014, 11:29 at 11:29 am #255651
This is getting absolutely ridiculous. I can not for the life of me understand why the guys in charge are not doing anything about this issue ASAP.6th April 2014, 11:36 at 11:36 am #255653
The most annoying thing is that everyone knew situations like this could well happen – there was plenty of time to do something about it before anyone really suffered with it and once again the FIA and co did absolutely nothing. There has to be a change: it’s dangerous in the long term for drivers and it’s particularly dangerous during hot Grand Prixs and someone could pass out while driving. I hope Vergne is feeling okay; I’ve been taken to hospital before with severe weight loss and dehydration and it is deeply unpleasant and it takes a while to fully recover from.
This situation has made me realise just how vulnerable drivers are. They really have no support and are at the mercy of the regulations and the bad decisions of the teams (such as Crashgate). I wish there was a strong and protective drivers union because the GPDA seems pretty weak.6th April 2014, 13:02 at 1:02 pm #255658
@stephanief1990 The GPDA isn’t even united on the matter – Alonso and Massa were strongly against raising the weight limit when it was discussed last year.6th April 2014, 13:18 at 1:18 pm #255659
Interesting that Alonso would have been against it, he looks to be carrying a few kilos more than people like Massa, Vettel, Rosberg and the slimline Hamilton.6th April 2014, 14:32 at 2:32 pm #255667
I don’t understand Massa’s logic of, “why should I give up my advantage”. He’s basically admitting that he has an unfair advantage and is willing to utilise that. I do a lot of Karting, and the light guys are forever saying they wish they were the same weight as their competitors so that they could prove it’s not all about weight.6th April 2014, 15:30 at 3:30 pm #255674
Well, the FIA are always behind the curve on the little niggly rule changes it likes to impart from time to time. Alonso is quite short so is definitely on the end of receiving an advantage, probably with more ballast than Kimi to play with. Hence he is a few tenths faster quite consistently. I always wondered if there is any weight limit rule in karting? At competitive levels.. or is it a weightfest?
Logic says have 700kg this year, 695 next year, 690 the year after.. etc. or even go down by 10 each year if the teams can develop that fast. So, of course this will not be done for political reasons. I agree that the GPDA should be pushing for it unitedly.. does it have to be unanimous? 2 out of 22 currently disagree..6th April 2014, 20:36 at 8:36 pm #255784
Then how can Button be so light – relatively speaking. I mean the guys is a good 6ft tall, that’s very tall for a modern F1 driver.’6th April 2014, 22:54 at 10:54 pm #255821
I still think this
80kg (or maybe 85kg) minimum weight for driver (including everything the driver wears)
Any driver under that weight gets ballast added in a regulated position in the car to bring them up to the regulation weight.
All a driver has to focus on is maintaining a healthy weight, they could even gain a few kilos with no performance penalty. Taller drivers would be at significantly less disadvantage.7th April 2014, 12:34 at 12:34 pm #255902
I think Button maintains a high fitness level, a bit like Webber. He regularly does Triathlons to stay in shape.7th April 2014, 18:59 at 6:59 pm #255946
I am a bit torn on the issue of raising the weight. On the one hand, I do not wish Formula 1 drivers to be sick and miserable because of a weight limit that could easily be changed in the regulations. On the other hand, Formula 1 cars are heavy (and slow) enough as it is.
Mostly though, I feel that a driver’s health is his own (and his team’s, in terms of support staff) responsibility. Formula 1 is not the only sport in which a person’s weight is important. Runners, cyclists, jockeys, and many other athletes have learned how to be light in a healthy way, and perhaps this is relatively new for F1 drivers. Dehydrating yourself, not eating any carbohydrates while training, and not carrying a drinks bottle in a desert race are all overkill in my opinion.7th April 2014, 22:07 at 10:07 pm #255961
This is getting absolutely ridiculous. I can not for the life of me understand why the guys in charge are not doing anything about this issue ASAP.
Because the FIA give as much of a toss about the drivers as they do about the fans, i.e. none whatsoever.
When a driver collapses or passes out mid-race then, potentially, if a high profile member of the public or paddock gets injured, on camera, they might do something about it a couple of years later. Until then, don’t hold your breath.
Mostly though, I feel that a driver’s health is his own (and his team’s, in terms of support staff) responsibility. Formula 1 is not the only sport in which a person’s weight is important. Runners, cyclists, jockeys, and many other athletes have learned how to be light in a healthy way, and perhaps this is relatively new for F1 drivers. Dehydrating yourself, not eating any carbohydrates while training, and not carrying a drinks bottle in a desert race are all overkill in my opinion.
None of those athletes operate in sports which require 2 hours of high-temperature endurance with strenuous physical exercise and mental engagement. Yes, jockeys have historically done mad things to lose weight, but a horse race lasts a few minutes, at most. Apart from jockeys, weight is not a performance critical factor. To a runner, a kilo is an advantage of sorts, but in an F1 car, a kilo is a tonne. A kilo has 400 people looking at you wondering why it’s still there. Most importantly, an F1 driver has to be extremely mentally adept and engaged for 2 solid hours. Look what happens if they lose concentration for a moment. Look at the amount of constant adjustments, assessments, analysis and reaction a driver has to undergo. What does a marathon runner have to think about during a marathon? Not a lot. Does he have to do it at 200 miles an hour in a capsule filled with explosive fuel and heavy metal? No.8th April 2014, 0:19 at 12:19 am #255972
Formula 1 is not the only sport in which a person’s weight is important. Runners, cyclists, jockeys, and many other athletes have learned how to be light in a healthy way, and perhaps this is relatively new for F1 drivers.
The difference is that those (besides jockeys) are not passive- they power themselves or their bikes in a way that F1 drivers don’t. They won’t be dangerously light because it is more important to build the correct muscles and train them for a variety of specific purposes (strength, explosive power, endurance, speed) than it is to focus solely on weight. F1 drivers do need a certain physicality to endure the race, but it doesn’t otherwise impact their performance (besides exhaustion and raised heartbeat perhaps affecting concentration/decision making). But weight is far more important to their performance at the moment. Giving up 0.3 seconds per lap all through a race isn’t a realistic option.
I like that F1 has a physical aspect so that drivers appear to be proper athletes. But I don’t think drivers should be punished for their natural build too much. Driving should ultimately be about driving talent rather than height.8th April 2014, 9:10 at 9:10 am #255980
David Not CoulthardParticipant
@keithcollantine Would it be possible to have a rule of the type that asks for a mandatory total mass of the driver + seat + ballast-bolted-to-the-seat and have it do what it should do?
I think I read that the drivers tried and (just like their employers) failed to reach an agreement on it, or something like that.
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