McLaren Formula 1 driver Fernando Alonso has revealed he will race with the same helmet design he used for the Indianapolis 500 when he returns to American shores for next weekend’s United States Grand Prix.
Alonso made his shock debut at the 101st running of the Indianapolis 500 back in May with McLaren, Honda and Andretti Autosport, qualifying fifth and enjoying a stint in the lead before ultimately retiring due to an engine failure.
Alonso raced with a largely black helmet design at Indianapolis Motor Speedway while still incorporating his usual blue, yellow and red colors, and confirmed on Instagram it will make a comeback at the Circuit of The Americas next weekend.
INDIANAPOLIS – Rather than the traditional December unveil, this year’s reveal newest likeness added to the Borg-Warner Trophy came Tuesday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum.
Takuma Sato got to see the result of the sculpting done by William Behrends and then turned from wax, clay and ceramic into sterling silver on Tuesday evening, as the winner of the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil saw his face revealed on the trophy.
Sato took the No. 26 Ruoff Home Mortgage Honda for Andretti Autosport to the win in thrilling fashion this year over Helio Castroneves, denying the Brazilian his fourth Indianapolis 500 victory in the process. It atoned for his near-miss in 2012, driving for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, the team he’ll return to in 2018.
It’s been a whirlwind last week-plus for Sato, doing the podium interviews at the Japanese Grand Prix, reflecting on his Indianapolis 500 triumph, then sharing the victory spoils with another Japanese pilot in Yoshihide Muroya, who won the Red Bull Air Race World Championship at Indianapolis this weekend.
Photos of Sato’s face on the most unique trophy in sports are below. This post will be updated following tonight’s full unveil. (All photos: Walt Kuhn)