The world’s fittest athletes, Formula 1 drivers have specialized physical and mental training. Only two hours of a race but a driver loses a portion of the total weight.

Strong physical, athletic, and cerebral abilities are essential in a series that is played at a thousandth of a second, including the capacity for exertion, the capacity for quick decisions under pressure, eye-hand-foot coordination, and unusual vigilance.

So, why do F1 drivers get weighed? It is a procedure created to safeguard both the rider and the efficient operation of the competition. However, since 2019 it does not matter anymore.

Why are racers weighed? How much does weight matter?

It is a physical need to measure the correlation between a driver weight and speed (safety features). Imagine having to complete a 100-meter track race.

The same is experienced by the driver.

As a result, they lose kilos while sweating. Such sharp loss can affect their health and speed the car as a person becomes lighter (up to two seconds effect).

See more explanation of the consequences in the following section for medical and technical reasons.

Medical reasons to lose weight

Drivers can become dizzy or lose control of their fine motor skills, which are vital for high-speed racing, thus it is crucial to monitor weight loss.

To improve racing results in hot weather races, F1 teams can refine their hydration and cooling strategies by using weigh-ins before and after a race to determine how much fluid a driver lost.

If something happened during the race doctors and medical personnel need to know the exact weight of the racers. And as it is stressful to drive in the race, the latter ones lose significant weight. Drivers are measured here for medical staff to know about changes in the weight of f1 drivers.

Knowing a driver’s weight is also crucial since, if they have lost more weight than typical during a race, the training sessions the following week will need to take that into account and probably be less strenuous.

Today, the main goal of Formula 1 teams weighing their drivers after races is to track sweat-related moisture loss during a race.

Drivers can lose several kilos of weight during a hot race owing to perspiration.

The technical reason for a decrease in the driver’s weight

Aspects of technical minimum needs should control the weight of the car with and without a driver.

After each race, weights are taken of the cars and the drivers to correspond to the requirements of the official F1 organization.

The F1 vehicles have gotten heavier over the years, and in 2022 they will be the heaviest they have ever been.

This is mainly because the cars’ safety measures have improved.

It’s crucial to make sure that teams don’t skimp on necessary driver’s safety elements to make their car lighter.

According to F1, in the past, the smaller F1 drivers had the option of adding more ballasts to other components of the car, allowing them to unfairly increase the balance and movement of the vehicle.

What is a minimum weight of a driver?

It is logical to assume that most drivers weigh around 80 kg because the FIA specifies how much a racer’s weight should contribute to a car’s minimum weight limit.

This is true because the majority of drivers weigh between 74 and 82 kg (163 -180 pounds).

A driver with a car usually weighs 764kg (1684 lbs). It affects the performance of a driver with excess weight. Though not enough weight affects performance as well.

After the race, cars, and drivers are weighed to make sure they did not fall below this weight. This is why it is better to slightly overweight the requirements of a minimum weight for a driver.

Recent advancements in safety features are mostly to blame for the F1 vehicles’ increased weight.

To make their cars lighter, it is critical to make sure that teams are not skimping on essential safety elements.

Since drivers can be weighed much more quickly than cars, they are weighed separately from their vehicles.

This enables them to start the post-race celebrations, interviews, or other responsibilities right away.

How much weight is usually lost?

F1 drivers dress in thick, hefty, fireproof race suits and helmets, in contrast to participants in other sports who dress in lightweight shorts and t-shirts.

The underpants, undershirts, and balaclavas made of the same fireproof material as their racing suits weigh quite a lot too. This all adds more weight and F1 drivers sweat more.

In addition, the interior temperature of an F1 car’s cockpit can rise to about 50°C (122°F).

This illustrates how hot and exhausting an F1 race can be for the F1 drivers.

Drivers typically shed roughly 2-3 kg (4-6 pounds) per race as a result.

In hotter weather, this can increase to 4 kg (8 pounds).

Things drivers do to train their bodies

These are the intensive physical exercises that drivers have to do before racing in F1 to gain strength and the ability to stand the pressure.

Even the tiniest drivers can lose weight or gain muscle thanks to these rigorous training schedules. That is why sometimes heavier drivers with their natural weight of 2,2-4,4 pounds more, have privileges these days.

Their engineers may need to make adjustments to keep the car inside weight specifications because their bodies change over the season.

After a race, a driver is urged to hydrate well in the race suit, and you can often see them eagerly doing so after an F1 Grand Prix.

Mentally, weight has a big influence on drivers as victory depends on it. The 2016 world champion, Nico Rosberg, is aware of this and stated that he thought about every possible advantage during the championship race. He stopped playing one of the sports he played in addition to removing the paint from his helmet to make it lighter.

He felt stressed taking care of weight control during winter, he stopped biking not to lose more weight than required in summer.


How much weight does an F1 driver lose per race?

Lewis Hamilton, a Formula 1 driver, claimed that he can shed up to 10 pounds during each race. Many drivers work very hard to resist gravity pull and sweat in a race suit a lot, losing water weight. Taller drivers lose less and more naturally, as the F1 commission noticed.

Does too much weight affect success in F1?

It does. Directly it is connected as the lighter the car, the faster the power forward is. Lighter cars take significant advantage. However, to control it, the F1 organization set special weight restrictions.

It is quite challenging to fit in the “golden mean” in this sport, which is why drivers were under pressure to lose kilos dangerously low. A driver weight is measured after each race as drivers sweat.


To sum up, these are the main reasons for the procedure. The first one would be driver’s safety measures. During a two-hour race, a driver can lose more than eight pounds of water.

The number of fluids and food drivers require to recuperate that weight loss safely is calculated by F1 teams using post-race weigh-ins.

It can also be helpful for F1 teams to regularly weigh drivers before and after races to plan for upcoming car improvements.

Teams might factor in a driver’s average weight loss of 8 pounds throughout a race when planning any necessary changes to the race car.

So, if you watch the show and wonder: “Why do F1 drivers get weighed?” – know that the first step is to determine how much weight they shed while competing and to ensure that they and their vehicles do not weigh less than what the regulations call for as a minimum. Too much weight can cause a tempo reduction for many drivers.

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