How Johnny Herbert forced himself to go "beyond pain threshold" in F1 debut

15-01-2020 13:56
by Matt Gretton
F1 News
How Johnny Herbert forced himself to go beyond pain threshold in F1 debut

When Johnny Herbert made his Formula 1 debut he had to force himself "beyond the pain threshold" after barely recovering from a serious crash around six months earlier. The now Sky Sports pundit was competing in Formula 3000 when he crashed and had a serious ankle and foot injury as a result. He then made his Formula 1 debut while still in recovery. 

Left foot issues 

Speaking at the Autosport International event, the three-time Grand Prix winner looks back at Formula 1 debut which is remembered by many. 

"I had to adapt before the race on Sunday. There was a particular bump just before turn eight and my left foot was very sensitive. It was still the size of a melon and when I hit the bump it used to knock on the side and it hurt like hell. I tried to lift my foot to see if I can relieve it but it never really worked," Herbert said. 

The pain was preventing Herbert from racing to the best of his ability and he needed to find a solution before he was forced to miss out on a massive moment in his motorsport career. But ahead of the race in Brazil, he found a way of removing the pain. 

"I thought about somehow going through the pain threshold. When I came to the bump before qualifying, I thought if I just let it flop, when it hit the bump it hurt like hell and I was screaming after the bump but then it never hurt again as I went over the pain threshold. I had to do the same thing to overcome the pain on the Sunday," Herbert added. 

Herbert finished the race in P4 after starting from 10th. He out-qualified and out-scored his more experienced teammate Alessandro Nannini. 

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