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2015 F1

Drivers ‘express themselves’ by changing helmets

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F1 is robbing drivers of one of the last ways they can truly express themselves.

That is the claim of Jens Munser, a helmet livery painter made famous in recent years by the ever-changing colours worn by quadruple world champion Sebastian Vettel.

Last week, it emerged that, to help spectators better recognise their favourite drivers, the trend of constantly changing helmet liveries will now be banned.

Munser admits that he will now have more time on his hands in 2015.

“It is also taking away an opportunity for drivers to express themselves,” he told Speed Week.

“You could say that they can still say what they want, but in formula one these days is that really possible anymore?”

Asked if there is anything he can do to tackle the new rule, Munser answered: “The question is how the rule will be interpreted.

“What is a design change — just one colour? And who is going to sit down and check everything before each race?

“If they need an expert, I will have a little more time on my hands,” he laughed.

Munser was also asked if he intends to sue the FIA for loss of future wages.

“Ha! No, it’s more on the fun side for me to do the designs for the drivers. It’s not like we make a fortune from it.

“On the whole, formula one is not the way I make money, but it is true that it is good PR.”

Finally, he responded to Felipe Massa’s suggestion that the ban is good because a driver’s helmet livery is like his “second face”.

“He is not one of the drivers who keeps changing his design,” Munser admitted.

“But from time to time he also had a special one, like when we did his last race for Ferrari.

“So he can’t do that anymore, nor for a race like Monaco or a home race or a special occasion, like Jenson Button when he honoured his father with a pink helmet,” he added. (GMM)

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