29 June 2011

M68 – helping develop new racing underwear

I was approached by M68 late last year and they told me about their bioceramic materials. I was really curious to try it because I’ve been hearing a lot of positive feedbacks about it from a few sportsmen. I was told Sebastien Loeb is using it himself!

The M68 concept came about by my driver coach, Bruce Jouanny, who is also a professional racing driver. Off track Bruce is an amateur skier, and this led him to his discovery of the use of bioceramics in sports clothing. His research into the background behind the concept found out that bioceramic clothing is a great tool to improve endurance, stamina and recuperation. From this, he immediately thought to himself that this technology would be ideal for racing drivers.

Where will the bioceramic materials be? You are probably aware that it is compulsory for all racing drivers to be wearing an FIA approved fireproof Nomex undergarment. Using this as a startingpoint, M68 came up with the idea of creating their very own bioceramic fireproof Nomex undergarments.
M68 recently produced their first set of undergarments just before the last race weekend and they asked my teammate and son of former Formula 1 driver, Jan Magnussen, Kevin Magnussen and I to trial it during the practice sessions.

In the two one hour sessions of practice, I realized that I had sweated less with this new undergarment than wearing the usual Nomex undergarment. I was impressed with the material, which was really comfortable, as well as giving me a quicker heart rate recovery and consequently making me feel fresher than usual once I was out of the car. I have to admit that the bioceramic material’s properties of extracting my sweat gave me an uncomfortable feeling, but I think it’s what it should be doing, and as a new sensation for me, I think it will take a little time to get used to it.

Unfortunately, the first batches which Kevin and I tried were in a large size so it was a little loose and this didn’t give us the best fit to be able to give a true evaluation of the product. The bioceramics were placed around the undergarments so it looks like there’s a polka dot design on it, which is quite cool, although they are still trying to find the right bioceramic color tones to use for it.

The next batch of clothing will be coming very soon and will be in my size, as well as being used with a special breathable material. This material will keep me cool for hot races and it will also absorb the sweat away, so it will be a development of the clothing I wore the first time. I’m really looking forward to try the new clothing and M68 has given to me a good first impression and I certainly think that there is a great future for the product. I hope with my feedback it will help them with their developments.

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