April 23, 2019

Remember Why You Started

In an interview given to F1 Racing Magazine (UK) for its March 2019 issue, Formula 1 racing driver and four-time F1 World Champion Sebastian Vettel relayed the following.  In conversations with his race engineer, Guillaume "Rocky" Rocquelin at Red Bull Racing, he'd been asked what racing meant to him in one word.  Sebastian told him  that word was "Monza" because he took his first grand prix victory at the Italian circuit in 2008.  The win was very powerful for him and, in his words, "it broke it down to the essence of what I was doing."

Years later, in the final race of the 2010 season at Abu Dhabi, Sebastian was poised to cement his first World Championship if he could simply overcome his nerves and stay focused on the task ahead.  Sebastian says that, as he situated himself in his car that day on the grid, he reached for his balaclava (the fire-proof liner that covers the head under the helmet) and there, written on the fabric, Rocky had penned the word "Monza."

The wise race engineer was reminding the young driver to remember why he started racing in the first place. "It's because I love driving," Sebastian said, "and he told me to enjoy my driving and not to worry about anything else."  It worked.

Rocky's reminder is a good one.  When the stresses of work or family or just about anything else we find ourselves doing every day become overwhelming, it's worth taking a step back to remember why we're there in the first place.

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