Several of Formula 1 drivers change their helmet designs almost as habitually as their underwear, but the Monaco Grand Prix always a presents a great excuse for many on the grid to go the extra mile…
And this year is no different, with a host of drivers creating one-off designs for the year’s most famous Grand Prix.
Not unexpectedly, Formula 1’s serial helmet painter Sebastian Vettel has worked with his team to come up with a novel helmet concept for this weekend’s glittering race. Appropriately, he’s bedecked his Arai helmet with sequins:
Lotus F1 driver Romain Grosjean – making his first appearance as an F1 driver on the streets of the Principality – is sporting a gold-coloured helmet to honour the team’s 500th Grand Prix (above right).
Meanwhile, two drivers are sporting tribute helmet designs this weekend, with 2007 World Champion Kimi Räikkönen paying tribute to his hero, the late 1976 World Champion James Hunt, with a near-identical colour scheme run by the Englishman, who passed away from a massive heart attack in 1993.
Räikkönen once famously entered a Ski-Doo race in early 2007 under the pseudonym ‘James Hunt’ while dressed in a gorilla suit!
Another driver paying tribute to a former F1 star is Toro Rosso driver Jean-Éric Vergne, who is honouring fellow Frenchman and idol Jean Alesi. Alesi is contesting his first-ever oval race at the Indianapolis 500 this weekend.
Two other drivers have opted for more creative approaches to their helmet designs for this weekend. Charles Pic has opted for a new colour scheme in what is the closest thing to his ‘home’ Grand Prix, with the Marussia driver paying tribute to past Monaco Grand Prix winners:
Perhaps Fernando Alonso’s effort is the most creative, with the Spaniard opting for a design scheme that honours not only Ferrari’s achievements in the principality, but also Monaco’s reputation as a gambling mecca.
But he’s gone one step further, with his ‘roulette’ style numbers sporting special significance: the number of times he’s won the World Championship (2), the number of Grand Prix wins he’s enjoyed (28), the number of podium finishes (75), pole positions (20), fastest laps (19), and more!