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Drivers feeling nauseous


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#1 chr1s

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Posted 01 August 2019 - 19:45

If I drive or ride anything on any circuit, particularly Cadwell or the Nordschleife, I feel sick within half a dozen laps, (one at the Ring'). I remember Jochen Rindt complained of nausea at Clermont-Ferrand (I think) and that James Hunt experimented with a drinks bottle in his McLaren at the Nurburgring because it made him feel unwell, (not to be confused with his pre-race nerves vomiting). Also quite a few drivers said that the Caesars Palace track made them feel ill too. So just how common a problem is this? And how do people deal with it?  Any answers welcome.

 

 



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#2 moffspeed

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Posted 01 August 2019 - 20:05

Mark Webber had a well publicised (food poisoning induced) mid-race up-chuck at Fuji in 2007 - which is available to view on You Tube if you really must.


Edited by moffspeed, 01 August 2019 - 20:06.


#3 Michael Ferner

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Posted 01 August 2019 - 20:38

Ira Vail had problems driving on board track speedways at some point, so he stopped and concentrated on dirt track racing.



#4 LittleChris

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Posted 01 August 2019 - 20:40

I think Caesars Palace sickened them ( & me ) because it was so crap !!   James Hunt was sick in his Nomex mask during the 1978 French GP whilst chasing the Lotus 79's . Wasn't there a theory that Francois Cevert was sick in his mask at Watkins Glen and that it contributed to his accident ?  



#5 E1pix

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Posted 01 August 2019 - 22:02

Sounds like simple dehydration to me.



#6 Lee Nicolle

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 03:22

Bathurst winner Bob Morris had to quit as he was getting sick when racing, this around 1980

Suffering from sinus issues I know I have been quite average on occasion. As ofcourse have a lot of others. Very hard to coordinate to the enth degree.



#7 GMACKIE

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 04:53

I only happened to me once. It was in a Golf, which has the engine in the wrong end...  ;)

 

Travacalm works.



#8 Antti Salmi

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 08:48

I remember hearing that Kimi Räikkönen avoided simulator tests because it made him feel nauseous.

 

On NASCAR side drivers have been occasionally affected by carbon monoxide poisoning (Denny Hamlin this year). IIRC Rick Mast had to quit racing due to health issues stemming from long term exposure to carbon monoxide.


Edited by Antti Salmi, 02 August 2019 - 08:48.


#9 john aston

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 09:23

I find queasiness sets in as soon as I hear the words 'iconic '. 'challenge' , 'going forward '  and  'issue ' . Or the word 'turbocharge' when uttered by posh boy politicians about the economy. Or , when listening to the commentary on Grands Prix , the words 'tyre strategy ' ,' DRS' ,'overcut ' , 'undercut ' and 'penalty ' induce violent nausea . 

 

But my doctor says  he can't help me.  



#10 E1pix

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 13:57

"Earplugs are what you need, son."
--- Dr. E

#11 DogEarred

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 14:22

As well as throat plugs...

#12 E1pix

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 14:50

Can't hear you, What?

#13 jj2728

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 18:26

"Earplugs are what you need, son."
--- Dr. E

 

Too late for those my friend, It's why I have hearing aids now......



#14 chr1s

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 19:59

Thank you everyone for your answers so far, someone mentioned dehydration which was what Hunt felt was the cause his nausea at the Nurburgring, but I remember him saying that the drinks bottle experiment  failed at the bottom of Fuchsrohre where he got a face full of orange juice! He still won though...



#15 kayemod

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 16:02

I find queasiness sets in as soon as I hear the words 'iconic '. 'challenge' , 'going forward '  and  'issue ' . Or the word 'turbocharge' when uttered by posh boy politicians about the economy. Or , when listening to the commentary on Grands Prix , the words 'tyre strategy ' ,' DRS' ,'overcut ' , 'undercut ' and 'penalty ' induce violent nausea . 

 

But my doctor says  he can't help me

 

You left out "quali".



#16 E1pix

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 19:14

I'm not wild about "P1," either, it sends me looking for a loo.

#17 AJCee

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 21:28

And corners that previously had recognisable names being referred to as “Turn” whatever.

#18 john aston

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Posted 04 August 2019 - 06:04

You left out "quali"

 

 

. If you saw how the modern F1 ..err ... journalist spelled it you'd feel even queasier.

 

Qually ... :mad:



#19 2F-001

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Posted 04 August 2019 - 07:07

 But my doctor says  he can't help me.


Ah, but surely Dr Palmer can... a session at his clinic in Lincolnshire can ease a range of modern conditions!

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#20 Claudio Navonne

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Posted 04 August 2019 - 12:19

It makes me nauseous when during the television transmission of a race, the camera focuses some "personality" or sponsor to the box that is watching the race by tv instead of seeing it live!



#21 Bikr7549

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Posted 04 August 2019 - 13:26

It makes me nauseous when during the television transmission of a race, the camera focuses some "personality" or sponsor to the box that is watching the race by tv instead of seeing it live!


Yes, and as if we are supposed to just know who the apparent celeb is as they don‘t often say. Guess I‘m just ignorant, but I am ok with that.


Edited by Bikr7549, 04 August 2019 - 20:43.


#22 2F-001

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Posted 05 August 2019 - 11:08

Yes, and as if we are supposed to just know who the apparent celeb is as they don‘t often say. Guess I‘m just ignorant, but I am ok with that.


No, you’re not ignorant: you just need to get out a bit less!

#23 opplock

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Posted 05 August 2019 - 15:58

And corners that previously had recognisable names being referred to as “Turn” whatever.

 

That is one of my pet hates. While observing the pre race BS on a British GT grid a couple of years ago a photographer made the mistake of asking me, the nearest person in orange, whether he could leave the circuit at "turn 1". He was rather taken aback when I replied "There isn't a turn 1 on this circuit". I did inform him that he could leave via the ambulance gate at the top of Paddock.

 

My mood hadn't been helped by the preceding aural assault by bagpipes. A team claiming to be Ecurie Ecosse were responsible. I found it difficult to see the Scottish connection what with the team being based in SE England and both drivers being English.  



#24 Greatest

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 10:09

I have once vomited during a karting race. I believe the constant and rapid changes of directions caused it. From my experience I can say that it is much nicer to look at the track ahead than the meal you have enjoyed a while before. And bread crumbs under your eye lids really hurt. Something not to be recommended.  :lol:  



#25 DogEarred

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 18:05

That will teach you to drive so fast...     :rotfl:



#26 airbox

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 18:20

I'm sure I remember a story about George Eaton having a full English breakfast on the morning of one of his Grand Prix starts to try and give him some energy for the day only to be sick into his helmet as soon as the race started.

 

Has anyone else heard about this? As Eaton was probably in a BRM I wondered if it might be from the Louis Stanley book of tall tales 



#27 JacnGille

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 18:47

I seem to remember comments about driving DFV powered cars for the first time. They said the vibrations from the Cossie almost made um sick.



#28 moffspeed

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 19:07

Many F1 drivers struggled at Clermont Ferrand because of its sinuous nature and topography. In DSJ's report of the 1969 event he claimed that many drivers returned to open-faced helmets that year in order to allow them the opportunity to have a technicolour yawn without the confines of a full face helmet. Jochen Rindt was particularly afflicted and seems to have borrowed an open face Bell from his mate Piers Courage for the event.

 

Of course the volcanic rock that littered the circuit was a more sinister hazard and cost Helmut Marko an eye 3 years later.



#29 chr1s

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 19:58

Thanks again for the answers so far, the thing I don't understand is, if I feel sick or am sick I have to stop and lie down for three days! How do all the above find it within themselves to keep racing? Maybe it effects different people in different ways, or is that just the difference between an amateur and a professional?



#30 E1pix

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 22:27

I agree with the karting comment that G-loading can make one sick -- but only if some other factors make it so -- otherwise it'd happen every race.

I never got sick in about 150 kart races. Felt like I could be a couple times, and finally learned to eat nothing within two hours of a race but instead drink at least a liter of water in that period.

A different source is "pre-race butterflies." Those are entirely in the head even though one feels it in the gut. Oddly enough or otherwise, that sensation is *identical* to what occurs at the outset of a hard mountain climb. Psychosomatic, 100%, and only furthered if overeating or eating the wrong things -- typically things that are hard to digest. Here again, water is your friend, as are carbos and sugars instead of a big-ass hamburger.

#31 Antti Salmi

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Posted 10 August 2019 - 09:31

Thanks again for the answers so far, the thing I don't understand is, if I feel sick or am sick I have to stop and lie down for three days! How do all the above find it within themselves to keep racing? Maybe it effects different people in different ways, or is that just the difference between an amateur and a professional?

I'm no medical professional, and I'm referring purely to my own personal experience. I've been dealing with motion related balance/nausea issue for past couple of years. Initially it was suspected to be an inner ear issue which was affecting my balance and causing nausea. Except everything was perfectly fine. I've also had a severe head injury in past, but neurologically everything was also normal. Eventually it was diagnosed that my symptoms were stemming from an earlier neck injury (whiplash). With that said, I don't know about your medical history (nor is it any of my business), racing/driving background, etc. but neck issues can flare up in many, many ways.



#32 moffspeed

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Posted 11 August 2019 - 16:30

OK it is relatively simple - if I put on my medical professional hat rather than my TNF/petrolhead version.

 

By definition it is an inner ear issue as it is from there that we gain our sense of balance. If you rule out other extrinsic causes such as pre-race nerves then motion sickness can be an issue for anyone who is doing anything other than sitting/standing dead still. So you will see folks being sick after exiting an ill-advised fairground ride whilst amongst racers a simple kart race (as mentioned above) might be just as likely to induce nausea as 200 laps of the Brickyard. If your circuit adds in hilly bits eg Clermont, the Nordschleife or even Cadwell the risk of being impacted becomes higher. Some people are more susceptible than others - witness many years ago one of the ITV F1 commentary team being excused duties having been hit by sea-sickness whilst on the deck of a boat in the harbour at Monaco. No one is exempt, most long distance competitive sailors will go through a phase of nausea/sickness during the early stages of their journeys. Recovery times vary too.

 

A "cure" is elusive, most drugs are ineffective but if you take a look at experienced trawler men or other seafarers they will often take intermittent gazes at the horizon - this gives the brain a fixed point of reference and (in theory) reduces the risk of motion sickness. Similarly when your kids travel long distances in the back of your car the cost of upholstery valets will be reduced if they stop playing Super Mario Odyssey on their tablets and start looking out of the car windows  in a game of "spot the Lamborghini" (or similar).



#33 E1pix

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Posted 11 August 2019 - 22:44

Thanks again for the answers so far, the thing I don't understand is, if I feel sick or am sick I have to stop and lie down for three days! How do all the above find it within themselves to keep racing? Maybe it effects different people in different ways, or is that just the difference between an amateur and a professional?

Google "Epley's Maneuver" and, Ahem, give it a whirl. ;-)

Your description now sounds a bit like symptoms of vertigo. It shouldn't take days to recover from any high-G pursuit. I had utterly-horrible vertigo for a couple weeks a decade back and did a ton of research instead of trust medical advice -- including reading horror stories of both kids and adults on drugs for years for being "incurable," then getting well in a treatment or two. I was cured within 30 minutes.

Never discount cheap alternatives, there's no money in those so you'll rarely get professional advice supporting them (at least, not in the U.S.).

#34 BRG

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 14:56

As a rally navigator/co-driver for many years, the idea of nausea was well known, although I was very lucky to never suffer (apart from once, which I put down to my Mum's cooking disagreeing with me).  But I know that many others suffered badly.  Use of sea-sickness pills was common.  I know that my immunity probably helped me greatly in beating others more talented but more nauseous!   

 

However, I never knew of a rally driver suffering motion sickness?  Maybe there is just too much going on in rallies for them to notice!  The mention of dehydration for drivers leading to general malaise is something that I recognise.  One driver suffered headaches and felt rough during stage rallies until we pinned it down to dehydration.  We made sure there was always a drink in the car and I made sure to give him the bottle after each stage, and the problem was solved.



#35 sk69

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Posted 14 August 2019 - 16:56

I've raced Formula Fords for 36 years & from the first time I tested at Cadwell to now I become nauseous on lap 9 of testing. Sometimes I've managed an extra lap but usually there has been a discouraging lack of alimentary control. Oulton Park has a similar but lesser effect. No problems anywhere else. It's a bit difficult to hold the horizon when going up the Mountain & through Hall Bends when your vision is limited to sky & then armco & banking. On race day at both circuits I am unaffected & seem as competitive (or not) as usual, the problem appears only in testing. There's no question of dehydration (nor eating/not eating) for me; it appears to be motion sickness. I can only surmise that the adrenaline of qualifying/racing outranks the effects of the ups & downs. The symptoms pass pretty quickly (15 minutes or so) but recur within a couple of laps of going out again. Rick Morris keeps trying to persuade me to go to Australia in the winter & race with him at Philip Island but I fear it's a long way to go not to be able to learn a long & technical undulating circuit. Nordschleife would be suicidal.



#36 chr1s

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Posted 14 August 2019 - 19:15

That's interesting that you mention testing at Cadwell sk69.  A few years ago I was watching the British Super Bikes from Cadwell and James Whitham, who was commentating said the same thing as you, that in testing he would be sick but once the serious business of qualifying and racing began he would be ok.



#37 2F-001

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 11:18

Welcome, sk69.
I’m assuming from your post and ‘handle’ that we can guess who you are ? - but I would not presume to name you here without yout consent.
But nice to have you aboard anyway.

#38 ceesvdelst

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Posted 20 October 2019 - 21:23

Chris

 

I have suffered this numerous times, at the same tracks you have too, German long track and Cadwell, it happens very quickly.

 

What usually happens is I start to get a nauseous feeling at the back of my throat and higher stomach, and if I carry on I am positive I will be sick, because I usually stop.

 

Obviously doing things like tracks days are a tense experience, and I was very nervous/apprehensive. So was not eating or drinking well.

 

I did though do about 10 laps of the long Snetterton and was fine, the feeling was there, but nowhere hear as bad. So I can only put it down to incline, although it seems to be corners that bring it on, and it got worse over the years. I did take a nausea pill there though, well half a one.

 

I play simulators a lot and have never experienced it there, but have always struggled with things like waltzers, fast carousels.  but am fine with roller coasters and things going up and down.

 

I did also have nausea in karts, EVERY SINGLE time I drive one, I would do maybe 3 or 4 races in a corporate thing and then start to feel it.

 

never been able to read for long in cars, and had ear issues as a kid which I am sure this is all about. Damn annoying but I do think I would be fine doing something like oval racing or hillclimbs, minimum time in the car.  Also am fine on a motorcycle.

 

It is motion sickness, brought on by the inner ear not being able to link the inputs your eyes are seeing and your gut saying  "I tell you what can fix this, I will make you sick"  Ar singly annoying, utterly frustrating. And unpleasant because the nausea can last for hours afterwards. 



#39 biercemountain

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Posted 23 October 2019 - 16:55

I can't remember who it was, but one of the DPI drivers reported feeling sick in this year's 24 Hours of Daytona while circulating immediately behind the safety car. Apparently the flashing lights can cause drivers to feel nauseous.