The COVID-19 pandemic has caused chaos in the lives of millions and race drivers are just as affected. In the first of a series, Tina Mitchell talks to F3 driver Quinlan Lall about how he is coping with staying home, physical and mental training during a pandemic and what motorsport brings into his life.
Motorsport Prospects: Quinlan, tell us a bit about yourself.
Quinlan Lall: My introduction around racetracks would typically be “Hi, I’m Quinlan Lall. I race in the Formula Regional Americas championship (formerly the F3 Americas Championship) with Momentum Motorsports.” However, when I am at university I am just Quinlan Lall the student.
A for my racing background, I did 2 years of the F2000 Championship series in the United States, a year of British F3 in Europe, and some racing in the IMSA championship as well as in the Caribbean.
MP: How has your fitness routine changed because of the pandemic?
QL: The fitness regime has definitely shifted. At home I’m doing a lot more body-weight activities instead of heavy weight activities. This means generally lower weights and higher reps. Thankfully I have a treadmill which allows me to maintain my cardio performance. I try and maintain a 4-day per week workout regimen.
MP: In addition to your physical fitness, mental fitness is just as important. How do you work on and maintain that?
QL: Sim racing has been a big factor in maintaining mental performance. I’m competing in the FR Americas Racing Championship (Formula Regional Americas) which keeps my competition skills pretty sharp. It also keeps my mind in the state of learning. With the cars being so closely matched, any advantage I can unlock from myself is key to a good performance
MP: With the world essentially on shut down, as an athlete and a student, have you been able to find any positives in this truly unusual situation?
QL: I have found some positives. Definitely being able to be home instead of in a college dorm allows me to balance my school and racing career better. I can go from an online lecture to a sim race and then right into a workout. However, being home also makes me lazy. Having food in the fridge makes it so tempting to eat all the time!
MP: What do you feel are the keys to a successful career in motorsport?
QL: Performance both on and off the track is key. Of course, you need the good results to get recognized, but then your personality and how you work with people dictates who will ultimately partner you in your journey to chasing your dreams. If you act poorly and don’t give off a good image, then it will be difficult to move beyond the lower levels of the sport.
MP: What has motorsport taught you so far?
QL: I would just say enjoy the ride. This sport taught me so much about myself, allowed me to explore parts of the world I never expected to see, and has brought me both great joy and sadness. But through everything, I would say enjoy it and savor it, because the journey defines who you are. And no one can take that away from you. If I had to do it all over again, I would not change a thing.
For more information on Quinlan Lall and to track his progress go to Quinlan Lall Racing.