Nowadays, the car to pit communications are so common, that its easy to forget that they were first introduced in the 1984 F1 season. It is said that it came about due to claims that the legendary Colin Chapman experimented with headsets. While the primary purpose is to relay information to and from drivers to teams, sometimes, what people hear are pretty darn hilarious.
The 2018 season alone has given fans a lot of radio gold to lap up. From Kimi Raikkonen to Fernando Alonso, featuring a few cameos by other drivers. A few of these will likely have you howling with laughter.
Sebastian Vettel (Brazil)
During free practice at the Brazilian GP, Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel showed that he had a very dirty mind. What should have been a straightforward report of something loose in the cockpit turned into a plethora on innuendoes.
He said, “Okay, there is something loose between my legs… Apart from the obvious. So repeat, there is something loose between my legs apart from the obvious. Something flying around I think. I’d be proud if it is what I think it is, but it it’s not.”
In all honesty, I cannot figure out how he managed to keep a straight face without bursting into immature giggles. His race engineer certainly had a difficult time controlling his own laughter.
Fernando Alonso (Abu Dhabi)
The 2018 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was Alonso’s final F1 race before retiring. If you ask me, he certainly wanted to go out in a memorable way. The Spanish veteran was running 11th and hunting down Romain Grosjean for the final point.
The team radioed Alonso and said, “There are 5 laps to go, last time round you were 6 tenths quicker than Grosjean. Gap to him is currently 5.6 seconds, theres a point here for grabs mate, let’s go get him. More performance, Multi C2, position 1 please.”
Alonso decided to boast a little, saying, “I have 1800 points”
The engineer’s reply was swift, “Well, for me, make it 1801”
Kimi Raikkonen (USA)
At the 2018 US Grand Prix, Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen won his first F1 race in 113 starts and five years. The ecstatic team congratulated the Finn and his engineer said, “Grande Kimi, Grande Kimi! Well done! Well done my friend”
Raikkonen replied, “Yeah thank you, f***ing finally! Thank you guys”
Valtteri Bottas (Russia)
As the most controversial entry on our list, it deserves recognition. Valtteri Bottas was having a terrific race until teammate Lewis Hamilton came up behind him. His engineer told him, “So you need to let Lewis by at Turn 13 this lap.”
The Finn argued that he was going to go faster on the very next lap. Then, Mercedes F1 engineer James Allison informed Bottas that they took a risk with Lewis and the latter had a blister. Furthermore, he said, “I had to do this to make sure to secure this, I understand.”
Bottas inquired about how they would finish the race and Allison confirmed that they must hold station. Finally, he promised to talk about the decision after the race.
Kevin Magnussen (China)
The Danish driverwas racing at the Chinese GP in Shanghai when this funny radio call came. Magnussen’s engineer asked him if he had received a message to let lapped cars pass. The Haas driver cheekily replied, “Yeah, but there’s no lapped cars behind me is there?”. The engineer sheepishly responded, “Okay, good point”