How F1’s drivers from Hamilton to Norris relax between races: Sweats, soup and sim racing

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Sometimes it’s hard to remind yourself that Formula 1 drivers are human. The stresses the cars put on their body at more than 200 mph, 23 race weekends away from home, the weight limits they’re subjected to, the nutrition, the diets, the extensive exercise routines – all in their quest to become the best race driver on the planet.

However, some of the drivers have revealed that, when it comes to kicking back after a tough day at the office and putting their feet up, they’re much like us, with small pleasures like “saying hi to the dog” or avoiding unpacking suitcases.

Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton, known for his strict plant-based diet and fitness regime, even admitted that he partakes in a little tipple when he gets home to Monaco.

Speaking to Formula 1, the seven-time world champion gave fans a little glimpse into his post-race routine.

“Usually put some music on, put on sweats,” he explained.

“I usually order soup, minestrone soup, it used to be my favourite – but they’ve just changed the chef, I don’t understand.

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“But just chill, usually put something on, a glass of wine – that’s if I’m coming back from a race.”

Hamilton’s number one rival in 2021, Red Bull’s Max Verstappen, prefers to take his work home.

“When I’m on my own, I jump straight back on the simulator,” said the Dutchman.

“If I’m not on my own, then you probably have to spend a bit of time on the couch.”

Lando Norris admitted, “I’d say I unpack my bags, but that’s a complete lie. I probably won’t unpack for a few days – I’m that lazy!

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“Probably then turn my heating on, because I turned it off when I left and it gets very cold in my house.”

Norris’ teammate Daniel Ricciardo had a similar response.

“Unpack my suitcase,” said the Australian.

“And when I say unpack, I basically just throw everything in the wash. It’s like, we’re normally on the road for a while, so that’s like a bit of a mini cleanse.

“Then it’s literally like probably order some food and sit on the couch and get into the next binge series.”

However Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel firmly remains a family man, “I just embrace my kids and my wife… and the dog, have to cuddle the dog!”

Alongside Vettel, compatriot Mick Schumacher simply replied, “Pet my dog”.

Unsurprisingly, after tough race weekends of intense pressure, many drivers admitted sleep was on the menu, with Antonio Giovinazzi simply saying, “Sleep,” with Alpine’s Esteban Ocon agreeing.

“First thing I do when I get home is sleep!” he laughed.

“I think this is what we don’t do enough of, and I need a lot of it.”

Williams’ George Russell also weighed in saying, “It’s always an amazing feeling getting into your own bed, there’s nothing like it.”

An ever-enthusiastic Kimi Raikkonen stated, “It’s usually on a Sunday evening, so if the kids are awake I see them. And the wife.”

“Kick my feet up on the couch, crack open maybe a beer or pour myself a glass of wine,” explained Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll.

“Throw on a movie, get some friends over and just disconnect from racing.”

A man of few words, Valtteri Bottas kept it straight with his response.

“Open a beer,” said the Finn, with a wry smile.

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