NASCAR is about lightning-quick reflexes, otherworldly driving abilities, and a sense of fearlessness knowing death could be just a crash away. On the other side of things is a set of challenges not discussed on TV. Among these obstacles, which many fans have likely considered, is the answer to a simple question. How do NASCAR drivers pee during races?
NASCAR’s unspoken question
NASCAR drivers spend several hours in their cars in the scorching heat. It’s one of the most stressful environments one can imagine. However, one of the biggest challenges of racing has nothing to do with life and death; it has to do with their ability to relieve themselves.
Unlike a movie theater, where someone can get up and go to the bathroom, NASCAR drivers are stuck inside their cars. The fact of the matter is that if somebody spends as much time in a car as NASCAR drivers do, they will have to go to the bathroom.
Fans have speculated on this since NASCAR first gained popularity. But drivers rarely comment on what happens when nature calls in the middle of a race. Whether there are diapers involved or other things entirely, most drivers keep this a secret as Beyond the Flag reports.
Nature calls for NASCAR drivers
In a car that can heat up to hotter temperatures than the most scorching day in the Arizona desert, it does not take a genius to know what kind of shape Stewart was in. Although Stewart never acknowledged the elephant in the room, the visual evidence about what happened spoke for itself.
After taking his victory lap, Stewart stepped gingerly out of his car and onto the winners’ circle. Some noticed that the driver was waddling on his way out of the vehicle. While nobody asked the question on everybody’s mind, the speculation behind Stewart’s interesting race flew rampantly.
Going to the bathroom is part of any pro sport. After all, everybody gets the urge to go at one point or another. NBA superstar Paul Pierce once reportedly left an NBA Finals game because of bathroom-related issues. In NASCAR, however, all bets are off. Decisions must be made on the fly, and drivers often have to throw away their shame to stay in the race.
NASCAR legend Dale Earnhardt Jr. recently confirmed this in an interview.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. comes clean
Dale Earnhardt Jr. grew up on the race track both as a racer and a spectator. As such, he had to go to the bathroom on more than one occasion. When he couldn’t hold it in any longer, however, the NASCAR royalty was blunt.
“Well, you do go to the bathroom,” he told Fox Sports. “Yeah, so if you can hold it, you hold it. If you can’t hold it, you go.” However, while everyone reacts differently on the racetrack, Earnhardt Jr. claims that presenting these problems is part of the preparation.
“It’s not too often that this happens because the car is real hot and you sweat a lot and you basically lose all your water weight through sweating,” he said. “So your bladder never fills up. If it’s a hot day and you get real nervous before the race and you drank too much water because you think you are going to dehydrate, you typically end up having to go to the bathroom before you even get the green flag.”
Earnhardt Jr. shed light on a funny, albeit serious issue in the NASCAR world. Next time you watch a race, remember what these drivers experience and know that if they had too much water beforehand or are suffering from the stomach flu. It’s best not to think about what’s going on inside the car.