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What's the Difference Between a Race Suit and Overalls?


When it comes to motorsport, safety is of utmost importance. Racers need to be protected from the hazards they may encounter on the track. Two common types of protective gear used in motorsports are race suits and overalls. While they may seem similar, there are key differences between the two.

Race Suit

A race suit is a specialized garment designed to provide maximum protection for racers. It is typically made of fire-resistant materials such as Nomex. Race suits are form-fitting and cover the entire body, including the arms and legs. They are often one-piece suits, with a zipper closure at the front.

Race suits are specifically designed to protect the wearer in the event of a fire. They have multiple layers of fire-resistant fabric, which helps to reduce the risk of burns. Additionally, race suits have built-in padding in strategic areas to provide extra protection in case of impact.


Overalls, on the other hand, are more commonly associated with everyday workwear. They are loose-fitting garments that cover the body from the shoulders to the ankles. Overalls are typically made of durable materials such as denim or heavy-duty cotton.

While overalls may offer some level of protection, they are not designed specifically for motorsports. They lack the fire-resistant properties and multiple layers of fabric found in race suits. Overalls are more commonly used in industries such as construction or agriculture, where protection from dirt, debris, and minor abrasions is the primary concern.

Differences at a Glance

  • Race suits are made of fire-resistant materials, while overalls are not.
  • Race suits cover the entire body, including the arms and legs, while overalls only cover the body.
  • Race suits have multiple layers of fabric and built-in padding, while overalls do not.
  • Race suits are specifically designed for motorsports, while overalls are more commonly used as workwear.


In summary, the main difference between a race suit and overalls lies in their purpose and level of protection. Race suits are specialised garments designed to protect racers from fire and impact, while overalls are more commonly used for general work purposes. When participating in motorsports, it is crucial to prioritize safety by wearing a race suit that meets the necessary safety standards.

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