Formula 1 racing has long been regarded as a sport which attracts a rare breed of man. From the reckless attitude of womanizing playboys like James Hunt to the superhuman coolness of Ayrton Senna, Formula 1 has historically been considered a stomping ground for men who sweat testosterone, bleed beer, and are constantly sharpening their adrenaline-fuelled appetites on nerves of steel.
So it comes as something of a surprise to hear that a Formula 1 racer has confessed to wearing sanitary pads.
But here’s the rub: Only in a professional capacity, and only when he’s thundering around the tightest of tracks in a bid to be the best of the best.
I know what you’re thinking, “Sanitary pads!” In a lesser, more feminine sport, such as baseball or golf, such an indiscretion could be overlooked. But in Formula 1, the wearing of sanitary pads is really beyond the pale.
What on earth is someone who spends their working life going hell for leather, screeching around corners, and risking life and limb just for the privilege of being to say, “On that day senorita I was the fastest man on the track,” doing wearing sanitary pads? More to the point, just who is the Formula 1 star in question that has brought the sport into such low repute?
Here’s a hint: It’s not Lewis Hamiltonm, but it is Nico Rosberg. The Mercedes Formula 1 star recently confessed to Sky Sports that he wears sanitary pads when he’s behind the wheel.
Here’s the caveat, and you’ll be relieved to know it’s a pretty big one. The Formula 1 ace doesn’t wear the sanitary pads in his overalls but on his forehead to prevent excessive sweat from becoming a problem.
“I have an issue with my eye when I sweat a lot. I do have a sort of headband in my helmet, but it is my trick. I put a women’s… what do you call them? The thing you put in your underwear.”
When Sky Sports reporter Craig Slater suggested “tights,” Rosberg replied in the negative.
“No, inside the underwear.”
A bewildered Slater could barely get the words out but utter them he did.
“A sanitary towel?”
Smiling like the cat who had just got the cream, Rosberg appeared visibly relieved that he had at last been understood.
“Sanitary towel. Is that what it is called? Yes. I put that on my forehead in the helmet to soak up the sweat.”
In a weird sort of way, the eccentric flamboyance of wearing a woman’s sanitary pad on one’s head rather than a simple headband will probably appeal to many Formula 1 fans because it does have a definite sort of joie de vivre about it.
What’s more, this Sunday will see Rosberg competing in the extreme temperatures of the Malaysian Grand Prix, where a sanitary pad might just give the Formula 1 racer a winning edge.
“The race is one of the toughest on the calendar because of the intense heat and humidity, so you have to be very fit. During the race I can sweat up to four litres which is massive and probably double the amount of a regular race.”
Whatever sanitary pad Rosberg rocks on Sunday, let’s hope it’s not a second-hand one.
[Image Courtesy Of Alex Grimm/Getty Images]