KUALA LUMPUR: In a show of solidarity with the grieving families of loved ones onboard Flight MH370, Formula One drivers will have tribute stickers on their helmets this weekend at the Sepang International Circuit (SIC).
Some teams will carry the stickers on their cars and a minute’s silence would be observed ahead of the race, with F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in attendance.
The Caterham F1 team will place the #PRAYFORMH370 stickers on their front nose cones.
Caterham head of communication Tom Webb said it was absolutely necessary to pay tribute to the people struck by the tragedy because of their close links with the aviation industry.
“We are proud to to fly the Malaysian flag
on our cars this weekend,” he said. “We also want to retain the thoughts and prayers for everybody who has been touched by this tragedy,” he told reporters yesterday.
“Our drivers will have ‘for as long as it is necessary’ stickers placed on their helmets, too,” he said.
He added that the stickers might be kept on until the Bahrain Grand Prix on April 6.
Williams Martini racing team driver Filipe Massa said it was a difficult moment not just for Malaysia, but for the whole world.
“I hope we can use the sport to show a nice thing for the families during this trying times,” he said.
A Ferrari spokesman said the stickers were their way of paying their respects.
“We are deeply saddened that the families who were staying at the Cyberview Hotel had to be moved as we had made the reservations a year in advance,” he said.
SIC chief executive officer Datuk Razlan Razali said the aerial show by Kisakti, planned for the race, had been cancelled. The post-race concert by Calvin Harris would go on.
“He is planning to incorporate a tribute to MH370 in his performance, too,” said Razlan.
The Mercedes Petronas F1 team, apparently, would stick a Tribute to MH370 on the side pods of their cars.
The elite racing fraternity are no stranger to racing amid tragedy.
They raced in Japan following the deadly 2011 tsunami and the anti-government protests in Bahrain last year.