Charles Leclerc has paid tribute to outgoing Ferrari’s Formula 1 teammate Sebastian Vettel with a special helmet decoration for this weekend’s season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
Vettel is heading into his final racing weekend with Ferrari at the Yas Marina circuit after a six-year stint at the Scuderia in which he has scored 14 victories and finished runner-up twice.
Leclerc, who has been Vettel’s teammate since winning the promotion to Ferrari in 2019, has presented a tribute to the four-time world champion with a new helmet scheme for the 17th and final round of the season.
The helmet design is predominantly white as a nod to Vettel’s traditional livery, with a red stripe depicting the Monaco flag across the top alongside a ‘Danke Seb’ message.
New helmet for the last race of the season.
Danke Seb! Let’s make this last race a good one pic.twitter.com/kaiubOlmgn
– Charles Leclerc (@Charles_Leclerc) December 11, 2020
Leclerc’s number 16 features footage of the two drivers during their time together at Ferrari.
Valtteri Bottas and George Russell are also executing unique helmet designs for the Abu Dhabi GP, while Romain Grosjean also revealed that his sons had designed a special helmet originally intended for him to wear this weekend.
Frank, Claire, this is for you, to celebrate your incredible journey in F1. Thank you for everything you have done for me, the team and the sport. I hope you like it pic.twitter.com/3O1mmXBy7X
– George Russell (@ GeorgeRussell63) December 11, 2020
This is the most beautiful helmet you could ever imagine.
It was created by Sacha, Simon & Camille for my last @ f1 race in Abu Dhabi.
I will try to wear it in the future as it is too beautiful to stay at home unused! pic.twitter.com/zTEy9QITP1
– Romain Grosjean (@RGrosjean) December 11, 2020
After being informed before the start of the season that Ferrari would not be renewing his contract for 2021, Vettel will make the switch to the new Aston Martin team to partner with Lance Stroll.
Speaking ahead of the weekend during pre-race press conferences on Thursday, Vettel said he will leave behind a “very different” Ferrari than the one he joined in 2015.
“We started with different people at the helm, the staff,” explained the German. “The atmosphere in the garage remains the same, the spirit remains intact.
“It is a shame that we did not achieve what we set out to achieve, but there are reasons for the strengths and probably reasons for the weaknesses in recent years. I’d say it’s still a bit different.
“In some things the team has evolved, in others there may still be space. Time will tell, obviously, Charles has a lot of time ahead of him with the team, a lot of work.
“We’ll see how it evolves, but for me the chapter ends here and I’m starting a new one with a different team, so I’m very excited.”
Leclerc completed Friday’s practice in Abu Dhabi eighth on the timesheets, while Vettel was fourteenth.