DID YOU KNOW? Here are 21 amazing F1 facts that defy belief

From the construction of cars to the skill of drivers, the world of F1 is fascinating. But do you know how many pieces make up an F1 car or why it could drive upside down? 


1 – It takes about 80,000 separate components to create an F1 car, and of course they have to be assembled 100 percent correctly.

2 – Before new rules came into place that dictated car engines needed to last more than one weekend, the life expectancy of an F1 engine was only about two hours – compared to a normal car’s 20 years.

3 – The deceleration of an F1 car is the equivalent to driving a regular car through a brick wall at 300kph.

4 – An F1 car can accelerate and decelerate from zero to 160kph and back down again in just four seconds.

5 – Rigs used to refuel F1 cars can fuel at a rate of 12 litres per second, which would fill a normal average car in only four seconds.

Autodesk VRED Design 2015

Autodesk VRED Design 2015

6 – A Grand Prix driver will change gears between 2,500 and 4,000 times in a race.

7 – The average cost of an F1 car is $9.4 million (around AED 34.5 million) – that’s not including the millions spent on research and development to improve the car’s efficiency.

8 – An F1 car’s steering wheel costs close to £25,000 (about AED 90,000) and consists of a multitude of buttons, including one to help them overtake. The wheel is removed when drivers get in and out of the cockpit.

9 – During a grand prix, an F1 driver burns around 1,400 calories and loses three kgs in weight. This is due to the high G-forces they experiences and the high temperatures, which in the cockpit can reach up to 50°C.

10 – An F1 car creates enough downforce that tracks with manhole covers have to be welded down as the cars create enough suction to rip the covers off.


11 – When braking, the extreme force created means some drivers’ tear ducts have squirted water into their helmet visors.

12 – When racing, an F1 car emits exhaust gas of temperatures around 950°C – that’s 50 percent higher than the temperature needed to melt aluminium.

13 – Since 1976, there hasn’t been a number 13 F1 car as many believe the number is bad luck.

14 – Drivers lose around two to three litres of water per race, making it vital for them to hydrate beforehand. Sports studies have revealed that it can cause the drivers to lose up to 40 percent of their psycho-physical ability.

15 – Italian Lella Lombardi is the only woman to have scored points towards the World Championship. She placed sixth in the 1975 Spanish Grand Prix, which also became known as one of the sport’s most tragic race weekends after a driver’s car flew over the barrier killing five spectators.

16 – The last time a woman started a GP was in 1976. More recently, F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone controversially suggested that the reason women are not taken seriously in F1 is because they “aren’t strong enough to drive quick enough”, much to the dismay of F1’s female drivers.

17 – Lewis Hamilton is the youngest ever driver to secure a contract that later resulted in an F1 driver role. After approaching the McLaren team principal aged ten, he was signed to the team’s youth driver development programme and made his F1 debut 12 years later. He also holds the record for the most race victories of any British driver in F1 history.

18 – Hamilton is the 11th highest paid athlete in the world, and the top-earning F1 driver, with an estimated $46 million (AED 168.9 million) earnings in 2016 and an extra $42 million (AED 154.2 million) in winnings and $4 million (AED 14.7 million) in endorsements.

19 – Bernie Ecclestone is worth a purported $2.9 billion (about AED 10.650 billion). The 85-year-old former team owner, who’s run the sport for four decades, is widely regarded as the man who moulded F1 into the multi-billion-dollar brand it is today.

20 – Earlier this year in one of the biggest deals in sports history, Liberty Media confirmed its purchase of the Formula One Group for $4.4 billion (about AED 16.16 billion). Chase Carey, vice-chairman of American mass media corporation 21st Century Fox, will become the group’s new chairman.

21 – While planes use wings to lift into the air, F1 cars’ wings are used to create downforce to push the cars onto the track and provide grip. It’s even been said that when travelling at over 150mph, these vehicles create enough downforce that they could drive upside down on the ceiling of a tunnel.

Posted in Features | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

By joining our mailing list you agree to our Terms & Use and Privacy Policy

Get the best of Abu Dhadi straight to your inbox