Formula 1: Why is Nikita Mazepin using lie detector sensors?

Nikita Mazepin, Haas, Formula 1 (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)
Nikita Mazepin, Haas, Formula 1 (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images) /

Ahead of his rookie Formula 1 season, Haas driver Nikita Mazepin is using lie detector sensors as a part of his training.

Haas recently confirmed that, following an internal investigation pertaining to an “abhorrent” video he posted on his Instagram story, Nikita Mazepin will not be fired and is set to compete as a rookie in the 2021 Formula 1 season alongside Formula 2 champion Mick Schumacher.

Mazepin finished in fifth place in the driver standings with two victories and an additional four podium finishes throughout the 24-race 2020 Formula 2 season after finishing in 18th in his rookie year in 2019.

While the second and fourth place drivers do not have Formula 1 rides lined up for 2021, neither one’s career is backed by the majority shareholder and chair of Uralchem Integrated Chemicals Company.

That would be Dmitry Mazepin, Nikita’s father, whom Haas will admittedly be relying on heavily for funding as the 21-year-old’s career gets underway.

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As a part of his training for the upcoming 2021 season, Mazepin is working with a member of the Ferrari team and using lie detector sensors to help him control stress when faced with different situations.

Haas are powered by Ferrari engines, and the Scuderia are slated to set up a new Haas hub in Maranello. More of Ferrari’s personnel are set to be moved to the Haas organization in the near future. Here is what Mazepin had to say about his training methods and the sensors he is using, according to Motorsport.

"“After I had an absolute complete failure in 2019, we decided to regroup 90 percent of my entourage. 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.“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. 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 previously tested Formula 1 cars for the former Force India team and Mercedes, and his focus ahead of his 2021 full-time drive is his neck. In his first Force India test back in 2016, he had to quit early as a result of pain in his neck.

Mazepin is scheduled to make his Formula 1 debut in the Australian Grand Prix at Albert Park Grand Prix Circuit on Sunday, March 21, although that race could be in jeopardy as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and current pandemic-related restrictions in Melbourne, Australia.

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Should it be postponed as many expect, the 2021 season opener would become the Bahrain Grand Prix, which is scheduled for Sunday, March 28 at Bahrain International Circuit.