As part of his training, Haas’ Nikita Mazepin is using the same sensors as seen in lie detector tests to help control stress.
The Russian racer is set to make his Formula 1 debut in 2021 with Haas, where he will partner fellow Formula 2 graduate and 2020 champion Mick Schumacher.
Mazepin finished P5 in the 2020 F2 standings, picking up two race wins and a further four P2 finishes, a vast improvement on his 2019 efforts when he finished that F2 season with only 11 points.
And Mazepin credited his coaches with picking him up off his knees in 2019, and will continue working with them in Formula 1.
“After I had an absolute complete failure in 2019, we decided to regroup 90 per cent of my entourage,” Mazepin told Match TV, as quoted by Motorsport.com.
“I changed from two coaches: now I have one, a physiotherapist, who is a professional in his field, and one coach, who is responsible for my physical training.
“And I plan to move to F1 with them – the people who raised me from my knees in motorsport, I really need to try to succeed in the next years too.”
Mazepin has also been working with a member of the Ferrari team – they train using the same sensors as seen in lie detector tests to measure Mazepin’s reaction to different situations and control stress.
“I’ve been working with an Italian for the last three years, who also works with the Ferrari team. We prepare with the same kind of sensors that are used in lie detector tests,” he said.
“That is, you collect a lot of information from your body and try to control them [certain indicators] with your breathing and other things to reduce stress in moments of heavy pressure at the beginning of the race – or at the end of the race when you’re defending your position.”
Mazepin has tested Formula 1 machinery in the past with Force India and Mercedes, and the Russian driver said he is working on his neck ahead of his debut Formula 1 campaign in 2021, remembering how in his first test back in 2016 with Force India he had to stop early due to the pain.
“My focus is on my neck. We were talking about my first Formula 1 tests – and I had to end them early because I hurt it,” he said.
“The feeling you get when you hit the brakes after a long straight… it feels like you’re hitting the wall. Because the cars are so good at braking.”