Now that spring has arrived, racing is in full swing throughout the Americas and Europe. We are ready to say goodbye to the cold, rainy, or snowy weather and glad to welcome the sun and warmth that will soon come our way. The heat, however, poses its own problems for racers.
Heat stress and fatigue can seriously impact performance during a race and have been documented in a variety of racing environments. Scientists have been studying the effects of heat stress on drivers for decades. A study by Mackie and O'Hanlon in the 1970s concluded that "driver performance is systematically lower in the hot environment" and similar studies on NASCAR drivers since then have confirmed their findings. During an interview, Formula One Champion Ayrton Senna said “‘You can drive a Grand Prix car whether you are fit or unfit but for how long you can drive, how precise, how consistent you can drive under stress, under high temperature, the difficult conditions during race is another thing.”
Even with breaks between individual races, a long day spend driving in the heat can wear a driver down, impact reaction time, and cause the driver to commit more technical errors. It is very important to make sure to drink enough fluids, try to acclimate to the temperature ahead of time, and to make sure you are in good physical condition. If that is not enough and you find yourself still getting sluggish toward the end of the day, consider taking additional measures to keep cool.Because the ability to stay cool and comfortable through a long day of racing can become an advantage for a driver, Kart Parts Depot is now offering the Techniche family of cooling products. The TechKewl vest absorbs heat given off by the body and provides cooling relief to those racing in high heat and humidity conditions. This transfer of thermal energy is done at a safe and comfortable temperature enabling optimal performance and maximal heat stress protection. The HyperKewl evaporative cooling vest can provide hours of cooling and requires only to be soaked in water to reactivate.
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