2021 Guide to Psychological Warfare: Drivers


You know, when it comes to driver coaching, forget about hitting the apex, steering inputs or applying the throttle correctly. None of this stuff really matters if you can properly and meticulously get under your rivals’ skin. It’s known as The Conan Barbarian School of Driving, the legendary Armenian-American endurance racer, I’m sure you’ve heard of her.

Example: Nico Rosberg ruffling HAM’s feathers and trying to force Lew into a mistake. Worked fine in 2016, innit. Senna vs Prost – political heaven. Or Piquet demoralizing Mansell. Alonso? The greatest psychological warrior of our time! This is what you gotta do: tell ’em they suck. Subtly.

Fernando is faster than you.

Fernando is faster than you.

Here’s our top 10 tips to successfully dominating psychological warfare off-track (don’t hoon while on the track! don’t be an idiot, halfwit, nincompoop, blockhead, buffoon, dunce, dolt, ignoramus, cretin, imbecile, dullard, moron, simpleton, clod). Gen Z adjusted.

  1. Look your nemesis straight in the eye and tell them they’re not making an impact after two months in the championship/series. That scoundrel got picked up by The Red Bull Junior Team, while your natural talent and raw speed were somehow overlooked. You hear that, Marko?
  2. Unsettle your team-mate bigly right before the race start by inventing a story that Instagram is no more and their ideas to change the world via social media have suffered a huge blow.
  3. The harshest one: just mention casually, ‘mate, you’ve lost all your followers on Twitter in the last hour’.
  4. Drag their helmet design through the dirt on TV – metaphorically or literally (that’ll get you into hot water though, opt for figurative bad-mouthing only).
  5. Order to print a fake newspaper with a fake article in it mentioning that all smartphones around the world will be banned effective immediately (pretend it’s a UN directive) and slip it to your team-mate in motorhome. It’s a slightly more complex this one because we all know how Gen Z peeps are allergic to paper. Imagine a genzy without a smartphone – total system shutdown! Mission accomplished.
  6. Steal your team-mate’s iPhone 12 Pro and replace it with an old Nokia 3310 – as part of a practical joke. They’re gonna love it.
  7. Convince other drivers you might dislike of a potential zombie attack that’s about to happen at the circuit any moment by showing them a powerful Tik Tok video as sound evidence. Might involve hiring a film production company’s services, however you can kill switch more than two birds with one tungsten ballast. Strictly for the rich kids. ¢£€¥
  8. Mess with their Wikipedia page (secretly). Write something outrageous like dunno, ‘driver X is mostly known for not using their hashtags properly on social channels’. That’ll do it nicely.
  9. Fill up their drinks bottle with a powerful laxative, such as Senna, while nobody’s watching. I wasn’t taking the mickey out of you with Senna there, it’s real. So Gerhard Berger, so cool!

    Just be aware that ‘Senna takes about 8 hours to work’, you gotta plan ahead. 2PM race start = +- 6AM Senna “treatment”.

  10. And finally, send out a fake announcement on behalf of race organizers regarding grid penalties for: a) selfies in the paddock; b) calling your race car a beast or referring to it as office; c) using the phrase ‘send it’ over team radio. All of the above will result in 5-place grid drop for the next meeting.

Hope you’ve enjoyed it and good luck applying these tactics in 2021! Psst, Valtteri, I’m talking to you.

More porridge and psychology in 2021

More porridge and psychology in 2021

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