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Taking a lap around Barber Motorsports Park really gets Josef Newgarden’s heart and lungs racing (VIDEO)

Apr 27, 2014, 11:03 PM EDT

Iowa Corn Indy 250 - Day 1 Getty Images

When IndyCar drivers take laps around road courses, it all seems so fluid, so natural, so easy. No stress, no high blood pressure, no problem, right?


Thanks to our friends at, check out this video below of Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing driver Josef Newgarden as he takes a practice lap around the 2.38-mile, 17-turn Barber Motorsports Park — site of Sunday’s IndyCar race — from about six weeks ago.

Newgarden was all by himself on the track and was hooked up to a monitor that recorded his heartbeat and respiration. The results are interesting, if not eye-opening.

And if what Newgarden does and goes through doesn’t get your own heart beating faster, then we can only guess you’re not human.

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  1. techmeister1 - Apr 27, 2014 at 11:24 PM

    Anyone who’s ever raced can relate completely. Those who think a driver justs sits in the car and turns the wheel and uses the pedals is naive. It’s quite common for CRASHCAR drivers to lose 5 lbs. during a 4 hour race just from perspiration. When you have huge g-forces on you with open wheel cars with good downforce it punishes your body in addition to all of the actual work involved driving. The first couple events of the year I always find which of my muscles are still out of shape. LOL

    • Jeff - Apr 28, 2014 at 6:29 AM

      I never heard of CRASHCAR.

      • techmeister1 - Apr 28, 2014 at 12:26 PM

        It’s that roundy-round circus act where they crash to pass because they lack the talent to drive around another car. It’s a Southern thing. LOL

  2. Jeff - Apr 28, 2014 at 5:52 PM

    Oh, hahaha, I understand now. Thanks.

  3. testover6370 - Apr 28, 2014 at 6:19 PM

    And Indycars are even more physically demanding than some other race cars because they lack power-steering. Different racing disciplines require different conditioning. Sports car racing demands an ability to sit in an absurdly hot cockpit for multiple stints, F1 has unreal g-forces, NASCAR has long races, heavy cars, plenty of contact, and demanding cars that require a lot of work to keep going straight. Rally requires pulling your own car (with some spectator help, if you’re lucky) out of the ditch you crashed it into and often doing your own wrenching out on the road. No doubt about it, drivers have to be in shape no matter what kind of racing it is. I get a pretty good workout just from karting. No power steering there either, and no suspension to absorb those bumps. My back is shot after a day racing karts.

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