Red race suits for McLaren drivers in China
17 April, 2011
Apr.17 (GMM) Observers had to double take on qualifying day in Shanghai when McLaren’s race regulars appeared to have made an overnight switch to Ferrari.
Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton qualified in Shanghai wearing all-red overalls that resembled the ones also worn by the similarly Santander-sponsored Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa.
It turns out the British team, whose Hamilton raced in Malaysia two weeks ago with a tiger pattern on the back of his standard grey suit, is marking the 30-year anniversary of its tie-up with sponsor Hugo Boss.
McLaren confirmed that the black dragon on the rear of the Shanghai-spec red overalls is there because “in the Chinese culture red symbolises good fortune and joy and the dragon is also a symbol of strength and good luck”.
There will reportedly be a different overall design for every qualifying day in 2011.
“I quite like these,” said Button as he looked down at his red suit on Saturday. “I think they’re pretty flash.”
Other observers told Hamilton the red overalls and yellow helmet reminded them of his favourite F1 legend, to which the Briton replied: “But Senna would have been on pole.”