Daniel Ricciardo is clearly already enjoying the freedom afforded to him outside of the Red Bull system.
The Australian will make his race debut for Renault this weekend and ahead of his home race in Melbourne has unveiled his new helmet design for the upcoming campaign. And it’s quite something, too.
Designed by Australian artist Nicolai Sclater, who works under the name Ornamental Conifer, the striking pink, blue and green design wods “stop being them” on one side and Ricciardo’s number three on the other. While Red Bull drivers are required to give a significant amount of the space on their helmet to the company’s branding, the only team logo on this version is on the visor.
The message of going against the grain is in line with Ricciardo’s move, which he committed to mid-way through last season — the decision surprised many in the paddock and has been viewed by some as a step backwards due to Renault’s position below Red Bull in the pecking order, although the Australian driver says he has a belief in the team’s long-term ambitions to return to championship glory.
Speaking about the design ahead of this week’s reveal, Ricciardo said: “I am trying to get away from the typical helmet these days, so it should be funky. It is kind of artistic in a modern way.”
The design is unique to most in motor racing because the colours and lines are not symmetrical on either side, with the pink segment covering the top right of Ricciardo’s head and the rest of the available space carved into black, blue and green segments.
Ricciardo has posted to his Instagram encouraging others not to conform to other people’s expectations.
ESPN will show live coverage of the 2019 Formula One season in the United States this year.
The schedule for this weekend’s Australian Grand Prix is as follows (all times Eastern):
Practice 1 – Thursday, March 14, 8:55 PM – ESPN3
Practice 2 – Friday, March 15, 12:55 AM – ESPNEWS
Practice 3 – Friday, March 15, 10:55 PM – ESPNEWS
Qualifying – Saturday, March 16, 1:55 AM – ESPN2
Qualifying (re-air) Saturday, March 16, 7:00 – ESPN2
On The Grid – Sunday, March 17, 12:30 AM – ESPN
Race – Sunday, March 17, 1:00 AM – ESPN
Race (re-air) – Sunday, March 17, 6:30 AM – ESPN2