Cooldown Room in F1: The OG “Drive to Survive” is back!
Formula 1 is the pinnacle of motorsport. There is hardly any sport that deals with fine margins like F1 does. The winner here could be decided by a difference of 0.001 seconds; that’s how close Formula 1 races are!
F1 is gaining immense traction in the last 3-4 years, primarily due to the Netflix show, Drive to Survive. That show has brought a great number of fans into the sport making it one of the fastest-growing in the world.
A very distinct and interesting thing about F1 is that it is not just popular for on-track competition but for off-track moments as well. One place that captures these off-track moments in the greatest of details is the cooldown room.
These cooldown rooms were among the very popular aspects of F1 things that had to be stopped due to COVID in 2020.
What is a cooldown room in F1?
The cooldown room in Formula 1 is a room where the podium finishers go right after finishing the race and celebrating with their teammates. As the name suggests, this room is meant to allow drivers to relax before they go onto the podium to collect their trophies.
The cooldown room has towels, water, juices, podium caps and comfortable couches for drivers’ bottoms after they have been subjected to a couple of hours of F1 racing.
These cooldowns rooms however also offer a great insight into the relationship of the very best drivers who are often each other’s greatest competitors. The cooldown room in F1 is where we get to see the unadulterated first reaction from the drivers after a race has been concluded.
Some say it is far better than the repetitive questions that get asked and the same cookie-cutter answers they have to give after every race.
Greatest moments from Cooldown room
The cooldown room in F1 have produced some very entertaining moments throughout the years. Given that the adrenaline is very high after the race, the F1 drivers often do not hold back in doing and saying what they feel like. You can watch some of the greatest cooldown room moments in the history of F1 by clicking on this link.
The below video shows Max getting a 5 seconds penalty and hence losing his podium place to Vettel in Mexico in 2016 for wrongly overtaking Vettel. He had to quickly vacate the cooldown room before Seb arrived.
Ah the good ol' cooldown room memories 😅— Formula 1 (@F1) November 4, 2021
Who could forget this moment from our 2016 race in Mexico?! 👀
When a last minute penalty for Max Verstappen led to Sebastian Vettel's podium run! 🏃#MexicoGP 🇲🇽 #F1 pic.twitter.com/AXtPgox5g1
This other video is probably the most memorable moment from the F1 cooldown room when Roseberg threw the P2 cap back at Hamilton. This was an era of Rosberg and Hamilton’s rivalry despite being in the same team. They often raced against each other despite team orders to not do so; also crashed on multiple occasions.
In this particular instance, Roseberg was pushed off the track by Hamilton on the first lap and they went on to complete the race as 1st and 2nd. Rosberg was visibly mad at Hamilton and when Hamilton gave him the P2 cap in the cooldown room, Roseburg just couldn’t contain his anger anymore.
Is cooldown room here to stay?
As COVID subsides, we would get back to normal and bring back all the things that we did pre-COVID, one of which is cooldown rooms. The cooldown room, reintroduced at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix shows the intricate moments between drivers something that the Netflix show Drive to survive is trying to replicate. It offers much more entertainment to F1 fans than most other things.
It is a good thing that F1 prefers entertainment over many other aspects of the sports (looking at you Michael Masi) and a good sign that cooldown rooms in F1 is here to stay.