Lando Norris Opens Up on F1’s “Hardest” Challenges Despite McLaren Aiding Dream Career

Published 12/28/2023, 10:19 AM EST

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Being a Formula 1 driver is probably the dream job for thousands and thousands of people around the world. There does not exist a single fan, who has never thought of being in the cockpit, going at two hundred miles an hour, pulling off stunning overtakes.

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However, only 20 drivers can make it to the top of the hill, and it requires a lot of money, hard work, and talent to stay at the top. While it looks like a dream career from the outset, it also comes with a lot of difficulties. McLaren star Lando Norris recently opened up about the hardest part of being an F1 driver, giving us much-needed insight as to what it would be like if we were an F1 driver.

Lando Norris opens up

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In a video collaboration between Lando Norris and his team’s sponsor Tezos, Lando Norris answered several questions about the life of a Formula 1 driver. However, the one question that captured everyone’s attention also happened to be the last question on the list. “What is the hardest part of being an F1 driver?”

“Travel,” Lando Norris immediately answers. “The hardest part of being an F1 driver is probably just the time spent away, traveling, flying around the world, preparing, and training. The job itself is one of the best in the world. I even find it tough to call it a job, because it’s my hobby. This is what I’ve loved to do since I was a kid. There’s nothing about this that I’d say that classifies it as a job. It’s just everything that comes around it. The traveling, the training, physically getting ready every weekend to drive the car is a lot harder than it looks. The preparation side is the hardest thing that people don’t see much of.”

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With 24 races in this upcoming calendar, the McLaren driver would have to spend even more time away from home. Almost every weekend is a race weekend. A typical week for Lando will start from his home on Monday. He’ll start the races on Wednesday and move back to his home on Monday. That is, if we ignore all the sponsorship commitments that would demand him somewhere else on the weekdays. The life of a Formula One driver. Not enviable at all.

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This does bring in the aspect of driver burnout, and the larger question: are 24 races too much? We also have a carbon footprint to contend with. Many experts believe that it’s time for F1 to start cutting back on the number of races.

Critics blast Formula 1’s hypocrisy

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Darren Heath, a part of F1’s paddock who travels to every single race as a photographer, knows what it is like to travel for every single race. He knows how it feels like to spend the weekend in a completely different country, or even continent for that matter, with a complex sleep schedule. So when he calls F1 out for having too many races, you know it has some credibility.

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However, despite the burnout, what bothers him the most is F1’s hypocrisy. He feels that Formula 1 cannot boast of going sustainable and at the same time increase the number of races in the calendar as well. “(My biggest problem) really is the hypocrisy. I have a problem with sports such as Formula One, which obviously burns a lot of carbon.” He continues, the teams and their cohorts of the great armada of people that flights all round the world, the trucks, the catering staff, the mechanics the team engineers, the team bosses, not to mention the drivers, and the press of course. When we all fly around the world, there’s more carbon footprint.

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Watch this Story: How Lando Norris Had a Chance to Go to Red Bull But Instead Chose McLaren

Add on to the viewers getting saturated as well. Is this a problem Formula 1 going to be facing soon? How many races would you like to be on the calendar every year? Let us know in the comments below.

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Written by:

Anirudh Kidambi

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"I have always believed that victory comes when we dare to dream big, and the courage to pursue those dreams." Hi, I'm Anirudh - Your Seasoned F1 Wordsmith at EssentiallySports I'm not just a writer; I'm a passionate scribe with an insatiable curiosity that fuels every word. My love affair with Formula 1 began in 2003 when I was merely 3 years old, and it has been my enduring passion ever since.
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Edited by:

Akash Pandhare

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