Some years ago, I opined that there will never be a woman Formula One driver and then discovered that Lorina McLaughlin reads Vintage Racecar. The issue is not skill, it is degree of upper body strength required since the arrival of ground-effect. In 1983, I saw Stirling Moss drive a ground-effect Brabham at Brands Hatch and he was not offered a drive. He has always been fit, but modern drivers have to develop neck muscles and can’t buy shirts off the rack.
Time was when drivers came in all shapes and sizes, but I doubt whether Dan Gurney could get an F1 drive today because of his height, while Alberto Ascari was on the tubby side. In 1995, Nigel Mansell’s return to Formula One with McLaren was aborted because he could not comfortably fit in a car.
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