Grand Prix Flashback: The story behind the missing F1 Diamond, you’ll have to take yourself back to 2004 season, the most popular race of the Formula 1 calendar, Monaco Grand Prix.
Diamonds might be forever but not when embedded in the nose of a F1 racing car, as the Jaguar team discovered.
Jaguar F1 team had tried to bring a little extra sparkle in 2004 Monaco grand prix.
Embedded in the nose cone of two of its cars was a button-sized diamond, as part of a promotion of the Hollywood film Ocean’s 12.
The diamonds installed on the front nose of Jaguar F1 race cars were reportedly worth $300,000 each — on loan from Israeli gem firm Steinmetz.
The crazy incident happened on the first lap — Jaguar driver Christian Klien crashed his diamond-wear F1 car at the Loews Corner before he ever finished one lap around the circuit, following the crash the $300,000 Diamond vanished.
The car, with the flawless diamond the size of a shirt button set into a steel ring, was lifted off the track where it sat for nearly two hours. When it arrived at the Jaguar garage mechanics discovered that its most valuable component was missing.
Klien said following the incident: “That will be the most expensive drive I’ll ever take around Monte Carlo.”
Klien and teammate Mark Webber’s Jaguars were also advertising the Hollywood movie “Ocean’s 12,” which involves an international diamond robbery.
A team statement said just following the race: “Christian lost his steering and hit the barriers forcing him to retire.
“His car returned to the garage minus his flawless diamond — it has yet to be found.”
The crazy part of the incident
Formula 1 track safety regulations prohibited Team Jaguar from searching for the diamond until after the race ended two hours later.
Jaguar team spokesman Nav Sidhu about the crash: “At that point, I probably should’ve been worried about the car or the driver. But, I must admit, my immediate thought was for the diamond.”
Stars George Clooney, Brad Pitt and Matt Damon were all guests in Monaco for the race.
Sunday night there was a speculation spread – a fan may have pocketed the stone.
Still unknown what happened there…!
Photos credit Getty, AP